Beaches: Flood Adaptation Measure


Aquatic Park Beach - San Francisco, CA
©Ariosto Aragão via Wallpaperflare.com



ECOLOGICAL INFRASTRUCTURE
WATER LEVEL RANGE: Up to 100-year flood level

SHORELINE LOCATION: Shoreline



DESIGN LIFE
ADAPTABILITY
IMPACT ON THE WATERFRONT
CONSTRUCTION COST
10-50 years
High
Minor Intervention
TBD


COASTAL FLOOD HAZARDS MITIGATED:
Enhancements can provide flood protection when combined with other physical infrastructure
Sea Level Rise
Storm Surge
Groundwater
Waves
Erosion


MEASURES COMPATIBILITY
ECOSYSTEM SERVICES: Measure may affect these shoreline values
Flood
Seismic
Floodwalls, Revetments, Ecological Shorelines
All
Aquatic Habitat
Terrestrial Habitat
Water Quality
Carbon Storage


DESCRIPTION:
Beaches naturally protect and provide a sacrificial buffer to land from waves and rising water levels. This measure includes beach stabilization, nourishment of existing beaches, and creation of new ones by importing sand from other sources. Creation or restoration of beaches can provide habitat for birds or other wildlife, as well as recreational areas.


CONSIDERATIONS:
ADVANTAGES:
DISADVANTAGES:
  • Beaches naturally erode due to wind and waves, particularly during storm events. Without protection structures, beaches will require maintenance via periodic nourishment, which can disrupt public use and harm habitat.
  • Mitigate storm surges and buffer shoreline and backshore erosion.
  • Provide benefits such as public access to a water body, recreational use, and ecological enhancements.
  • Flexible design.
  • Only suitable for low-lying coastal areas with existing sources of sand. Source sand should match native beach sand.
  • Can collect floating debris.
  • Require periodic maintenance in the form of nourishment, e.g. 3 to 10 years.
  • Requires high degree of coordination with coastal regulatory agencies.


CONSTRUCTION IMPACTS TO THE PUBLIC:
SEA LEVEL RISE ADAPTATION OPPORTUNITIES:
CASE STUDIES:
  • Minimal public impacts, given limited suitability in densely populated areas. If the land used within polders holds any infrastructure or utilities, access to and protection of these assets would need to be considered to minimize utility disruptions.
  • Through the increase of levee crest elevation, polders can be adapted to different water levels.
  • None cited


DESIGN OPPORTUNITIES:
Ecological Enhancements
Urban Design
Form
  • Beaches can be integrated with other ecological infrastructure and enhancements. Can provide and protect habitat, enhance biodiversity, and provide a food supply for wildlife, if not disturbed by nourishment.
  • Creation of recreational access to waterfront.
  • Form is dynamic, depending upon on wind and wave environment, and existence/placement of protection structures. New beaches require a large horizontal extent.


DESIGN CONSIDERATIONS:

  • Sand is placed on beaches to increase the elevation and distance between the upland areas and the shoreline.
  • If sand is being placed on an existing beach, the grain size and color of the fill sand should closely match the native beach sand, and fill sand should be free of any contaminants.
  • Because wind, waves, currents, and water levels are drivers of coastal erosion, they are key elements for design and should be well understood and defined.
  • Within bays, the potential of wind and waves to transport and settle floating debris on the beach should be considered.

HISTORICAL RESOURCE CONSIDERATIONS:

  • Beach fills should not bury or affect historical structures.
  • Wind conditions should be considered to prevent damage due to wind transport of sand.

SITE-SPECIFIC CONSIDERATIONS:

  • The implications of delivering the sand to the project site, by either land or water, should be considered. These include noise; impacts on vehicular, pedestrian and marine traffic; and restrictions to beach use, and other urban life disruptions.
  • Site-specific wave and water level conditions are critical for all aspects of beach projects.

URBAN DESIGN CONSIDERATIONS:

  • Wind conditions should be considered to prevent deposition of sand on roadways and walkways.

INSTALLATION AND CONSTRUCTABILITY CONSIDERATIONS:

  • Stormwater outfalls and culverts must be considered to prevent the inflow of contaminated sediments and water.
  • Constructability is generally feasible, if sand sources and marine contractors with adequate equipment are available. Obtaining sand from offshore could complicate construction. Water-side construction would need to consider marine weather and water level time windows to minimize downtime, and beach use to mitigate public use disruption.

OPERATIONS AND MAINTENANCE CONSIDERATIONS:

  • Beach operation needs are generally low and depend on public use. However, beaches will be prone to erosion in varying degrees depending on the wave climate and water levels. Without protection structures, beaches will require maintenance via periodic nourishment.
  • Periodic removal of accumulated debris and trash will be required, particularly if recreational use is high.


Download the Beaches Factsheet.

Learn about other types of measures from our Measures Explorer page.


Aquatic Park Beach - San Francisco, CA
©Ariosto Aragão via Wallpaperflare.com



ECOLOGICAL INFRASTRUCTURE
WATER LEVEL RANGE: Up to 100-year flood level

SHORELINE LOCATION: Shoreline



DESIGN LIFE
ADAPTABILITY
IMPACT ON THE WATERFRONT
CONSTRUCTION COST
10-50 years
High
Minor Intervention
TBD


COASTAL FLOOD HAZARDS MITIGATED:
Enhancements can provide flood protection when combined with other physical infrastructure
Sea Level Rise
Storm Surge
Groundwater
Waves
Erosion


MEASURES COMPATIBILITY
ECOSYSTEM SERVICES: Measure may affect these shoreline values
Flood
Seismic
Floodwalls, Revetments, Ecological Shorelines
All
Aquatic Habitat
Terrestrial Habitat
Water Quality
Carbon Storage


DESCRIPTION:
Beaches naturally protect and provide a sacrificial buffer to land from waves and rising water levels. This measure includes beach stabilization, nourishment of existing beaches, and creation of new ones by importing sand from other sources. Creation or restoration of beaches can provide habitat for birds or other wildlife, as well as recreational areas.


CONSIDERATIONS:
ADVANTAGES:
DISADVANTAGES:
  • Beaches naturally erode due to wind and waves, particularly during storm events. Without protection structures, beaches will require maintenance via periodic nourishment, which can disrupt public use and harm habitat.
  • Mitigate storm surges and buffer shoreline and backshore erosion.
  • Provide benefits such as public access to a water body, recreational use, and ecological enhancements.
  • Flexible design.
  • Only suitable for low-lying coastal areas with existing sources of sand. Source sand should match native beach sand.
  • Can collect floating debris.
  • Require periodic maintenance in the form of nourishment, e.g. 3 to 10 years.
  • Requires high degree of coordination with coastal regulatory agencies.


CONSTRUCTION IMPACTS TO THE PUBLIC:
SEA LEVEL RISE ADAPTATION OPPORTUNITIES:
CASE STUDIES:
  • Minimal public impacts, given limited suitability in densely populated areas. If the land used within polders holds any infrastructure or utilities, access to and protection of these assets would need to be considered to minimize utility disruptions.
  • Through the increase of levee crest elevation, polders can be adapted to different water levels.
  • None cited


DESIGN OPPORTUNITIES:
Ecological Enhancements
Urban Design
Form
  • Beaches can be integrated with other ecological infrastructure and enhancements. Can provide and protect habitat, enhance biodiversity, and provide a food supply for wildlife, if not disturbed by nourishment.
  • Creation of recreational access to waterfront.
  • Form is dynamic, depending upon on wind and wave environment, and existence/placement of protection structures. New beaches require a large horizontal extent.


DESIGN CONSIDERATIONS:

  • Sand is placed on beaches to increase the elevation and distance between the upland areas and the shoreline.
  • If sand is being placed on an existing beach, the grain size and color of the fill sand should closely match the native beach sand, and fill sand should be free of any contaminants.
  • Because wind, waves, currents, and water levels are drivers of coastal erosion, they are key elements for design and should be well understood and defined.
  • Within bays, the potential of wind and waves to transport and settle floating debris on the beach should be considered.

HISTORICAL RESOURCE CONSIDERATIONS:

  • Beach fills should not bury or affect historical structures.
  • Wind conditions should be considered to prevent damage due to wind transport of sand.

SITE-SPECIFIC CONSIDERATIONS:

  • The implications of delivering the sand to the project site, by either land or water, should be considered. These include noise; impacts on vehicular, pedestrian and marine traffic; and restrictions to beach use, and other urban life disruptions.
  • Site-specific wave and water level conditions are critical for all aspects of beach projects.

URBAN DESIGN CONSIDERATIONS:

  • Wind conditions should be considered to prevent deposition of sand on roadways and walkways.

INSTALLATION AND CONSTRUCTABILITY CONSIDERATIONS:

  • Stormwater outfalls and culverts must be considered to prevent the inflow of contaminated sediments and water.
  • Constructability is generally feasible, if sand sources and marine contractors with adequate equipment are available. Obtaining sand from offshore could complicate construction. Water-side construction would need to consider marine weather and water level time windows to minimize downtime, and beach use to mitigate public use disruption.

OPERATIONS AND MAINTENANCE CONSIDERATIONS:

  • Beach operation needs are generally low and depend on public use. However, beaches will be prone to erosion in varying degrees depending on the wave climate and water levels. Without protection structures, beaches will require maintenance via periodic nourishment.
  • Periodic removal of accumulated debris and trash will be required, particularly if recreational use is high.


Download the Beaches Factsheet.

Learn about other types of measures from our Measures Explorer page.