4/25/18 ~ Wakulla County Announces Completion of Shell Point Beach Restoration

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Wakulla County Announces Completion of Shell Point Beach Restoration Project

Wakulla County Board of County Commissioners announces the completion of the Natural Resources Damage Assessment (NRDA) Program at Shell Point Beach.

In 2011, BP agreed to provide $1 billion toward early restoration projects in the Gulf of Mexico to address injuries to natural resources caused by the oil spill.  In turn, the County submitted an application in 2012 seeking funding from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) for several potential coastal projects including Shell Point Beach.  The County was notified by FDEP in 2014 that Shell Point Beach was awarded NRDA funds.

Shell Point is located along Apalachee Bay in Wakulla County and has 800+/- feet of beach that is owned and operated by Wakulla County.  The beach was nourished with beach quality sand obtained from an upland source and placed landward of the Mean High Water Line.  An upland retaining wall, native coastal wetland vegetation, oyster shell break waters, sand dunes, and numerous species of native upland coastal vegetation were all installed to stabilize the sand and reduce erosion on the beach. Post and rope fencing, sand fencing along with split rail fencing were also installed to direct pedestrian foot traffic and give the beach a new look. The approximate total project cost for engineering, construction, and administration was $550,000.  “This is big for our County, Shell Point Beach is a hidden treasure.  Not only will the improvements support tourism, it also helps protect property and habitat,” said County Administrator David Edwards.

As a part of the NRDA program, FDEP managed the grant and grant funds.  MRD Associates, Inc. was hired by FDEP and administered the design, permitting, and construction supervision, and DPS Corp. Environmental Contractors handled the construction. 

In addition to the NRDA funding, the County expended approximately $78,000 in One Cent Sales Tax funds resurfacing the roadway in front of the beach, installing traffic calming devices, paving and striping the parking areas, and installing a new playground. 

For additional information related to this story, please contact Jessica Welch, Communications & Public Services Director at (850) 926-0919 ext. 706 or [email protected].