Next Week Will Be Big For Beach Renourishment

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The Town Council is expected to approve Ahtna Marine and Construction for the big dredging/pipeline renourishment project the town will begin this Summer. Ahtna was the only company out of three that met the criteria for the project and came in under budget.

The total budget to renourish Fort Myers Beach is expected to cost $25 million. Ahtna’s bid came in at $21.7 million. A bid from Callan Marine came in at $37.2 million and Weeks Marine submitted a bid of $38.8 million. A few other companies submitted incomplete bids.

The town had to put the project out to bid a second time after the first round of bids came in millions of dollars over budget. The reason they were so high was due to the work the companies needed to do to work around turtle season and shorebird nesting season. The second round of bids has the project starting on the north end and working its way down south later in the season.

Shorebird breeding season is February 15th through September. The FDEP permit prohibit construction in the Critical Wildlife Area between March 1 and November 1 for Sea Turtle and Shorebird nesting.

When both the truck-haul and dredging beach renourishment projects are complete, Fort Myers Beach will see $43 million worth of new sand (1.3 million yards). 900,000 yards of the 1.3 million will be from the dredging project with the balance from the truck-haul project.

The approximately $22 Million beach renourishment project is being funded through multiple sources: Lee County ($6,431,534), The Florida Department of Environmental Protection ($14,013,346), FEMA ($1,408,050) and the town ($2,247,741).

Lee County Board of Commissioners is expected to approve an inter-local agreement with the town on Tuesday to allow the town to move forward with the project. Lee County owns several portions of the beach; Lynn Hall Park, Crescent Beach Park and Bowditch Beach. Lee County’s portion of the beach renourishment is being paid for through TDC funding.

The Estero Island Nourishment Project is a continuation of the town’s long term goal to maintain its critically eroding shoreline. Sand will be pumped from offshore onto the beach via pipes. The design beach will take approximately six months to construct. State and Federal permitting requires monitoring and tilling for several years after the sand is placed. In addition, the Town has obtained authorization for maintenance grading in the project area to maintain a positive grade for better drainage to reduce pooling on the beach for the life of the State permit, which is 15 years.

2 COMMENTS

  1. Why don’t they start at both ends of the beach north and south , south end needs it bad we are very vulnerable to surge ! Get it done faster do it both ways and meet in the middle !

  2. As the condos on the south end of island remain mostly unoccupied no one seems to care, but the “entire beach” at Carlos Pointe is now roped off for birds, the Entire beach! There use to be a walkway between the blocked areas provided for us to access our beach but no more, it’s a large beach and we’re forced to walk even further around the ropes to avoid the bird areas, the area grows larger every year, it’s insane at this point the birds own the entire beach. Every year the ropes go up sooner, at one time it was June, then May and now April, two of my neighbors sold their property and moved to mid island as essentially we no longer have a usable beach here!!

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