AVALON — The borough started a sand back passing project that will move approximately 55,000 cubic yards of sand from a permitted borrow area to six blocks of north end beaches that were eroded during winter storm events, Business Administrator Scott J. Wahl said Thursday.
The back passing project is being conducted with rented heavy equipment by the borough’s public works department, Wahl said.
“This is a very necessary and important project to the borough for the protection of our community,” Mayor Martin Pagliughi said in a statement. “Sand back passing has proven to be a very efficient, cost-effective measure to provide interim protection for our community between hydraulic beach fill projects.”
The borough is using heavy equipment to move sand below the high tide mark from beaches between 33rd and 40th streets north to eroded beaches between 9th Street and 15th Street, Wahl said.
The wet sand is thinly scraped east of the high tide line, placed into trucks, moved to the north end beaches and graded to templates approved by the United States Army Corps of Engineers, Wahl said.
The goal is to have all of the work completed in advance of Memorial Day weekend, Wahl said. If there are unfavorable weather conditions, the project would cease during the holiday weekend and conclude immediately after the weekend, he said.
Cape May became the first county in the state to receive the StormReady designation from the…
The natural ocean currents remove sand from some north end beaches and transport it south to this borrow area, Wahl said. The back passing project relocates this sand back to its place of origin, he said.
During a back passing project in 2019, sand was naturally restored by ocean currents to the borrow area before the trucks returned from the north end to collect additional sand, Wahl said.
The borough is appreciative of the efforts by Cape May County to arrange for the heavy equipment to be brought safely into thecommunity via Avalon Boulevard, Wahl said.
The beach will remain open during this project, Wahl said.
For public safety, select beach paths in both the borrow area and the fill area will be closed to allow this project to continue, Wahl said. The public is advised that this is an active work zone and to be aware of heavy equipment traversing this portion of the beachfront, he said.
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