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Dump trucks filled with sand set to roll into North Myrtle Beach

Dune restoration to follow emergency beach renourishment

A contractor is gearing up to begin dune restoration in North Myrtle Beach next week, as a follow-up to the U.S. Army Corps' emergency beach renourishment project in October.
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A contractor is gearing up to begin dune restoration in North Myrtle Beach next week, as a follow-up to the U.S. Army Corps' emergency beach renourishment project in October.

Trucks filled with sand will start rolling into North Myrtle Beach on Monday as work there begins to rebuild dunes decimated by Hurricane Matthew.

It’s a three-month project with an estimated completion date of March 1, that will see 60,000 cubic yards of sand trucked in from Little River.

Lights for nighttime work will not likely be needed, said Pat Dowling, North Myrtle Beach spokesman.

“It’s a probability there won’t be a lot of night work, unless they get behind the eight-ball and they have to,” Dowling said.

The work could be noisy at times with five to 15 dump trucks a day hauling sand to the beach, where it will be offloaded onto special off-road trucks for beach transportation then bulldozed into place.

Federal government regulations also require the trucks to use backup alarm beeps, and the trucks sometimes use a vibrating system when offloading the sand, Dowling said.

Because there are so few trucks, it’s not expected to affect traffic.

The work could also cause brief beach closures along some sections of beach, but only two parking lots are expected to be used for staging construction equipment.

“As the tide gets high, the beach will be blocked off intermittently so dump trucks and people don’t run afoul of one another,” Dowling said. “As far as blocking beach lots, that won’t be to the degree that it was during renourishment.”

The Army Corps of Engineers conducted the $10.6 million beach renourishment project in October, but it’s up to the city to rebuild the dunes and replant grass.

The dune work is not a beautification project, but is intended to protect ocean-front structures from storm surges, Dowling said. In some stretches along North Myrtle Beach, the Army Corps determined that damaged dunes did not meet the emergency standards for renewal.

“The dunes were largely destroyed and totaled by Hurricane Matthew—he dealt the death blow—but prior storms had eaten away at those dunes,” Dowling said.

The contractor will begin work in the Cherry Grove section from 42nd Avenue North to 55th Avenue North, and then move to 45th Avenue South to 48th Avenue South.

Sand from the Cherry Grove dredging project was tested and found to be compatible with the existing dune and beach sand, and will be transferred from the dredging basin on Little River Neck Road, Dowling said.

When completed, the new dune berm will measure about seven feet high and about 35 feet wide. A.O. Hardee & Son, Inc. is the contractor for the $616,000 project.

Audrey Hudson: 843-444-1765, @AudreyHudson

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