3,000 tons of a sand a day restoring Flagler County dunes

By Brittany Jones, Flagler County Reporter
Last Updated: Wednesday, February 21, 2018, 7:54 PM EST

It’s week five in a restoration project to restore the dunes of Flagler County's beaches, and on Wednesday crews gave us a look at the progress being made. 

  • Dune restoration project underway in Flagler County
  • 14-16 miles of coastline being restored
  • Project should be complete in Spring 2019

Trucks dumped load after load of sand into the Washington Oaks State Park beach area.

"We have the trucking company bringing the sand to the staging area, haul it off on the track trucks, and put it here on the dune locations," said Faith Alkhatib, public works director and county engineer.

Alkhatib walked reporters through the county's massive dune project. She said storms wiped out all of the park's dunes.

"You can see the breach, all the dunes have been washed out," said Alkhatib.

Alkhatib said county crews are helping offload the trucks, and about 10 county employees are on site everyday.

"I’m talking about 14-16 miles of coastline. That’s a lot of dunes to build," said Alkhatib.

Hurricanes Matthew and Irma took out miles of dunes and flooded nearby resident's homes.

"We started with zero elevation, you can see how low it is because we didn’t have any dunes here," said Alkhatib.

She said now they're building up the dunes 14 feet high.

Alkhatib said the trucks come all the way from Gainesville and drop off more than 3,000 tons of sand per day.

"Oh my God. We knew we had some problems with our dunes, but I never anticipated it would be this bad," said Alkhatib.

Mother Nature has halted their work some days with limited daylight and high tides. Local, state and FEMA dollars totaling about $28 million are funding the project. Alkhatib said residents will once again have the protection they need from the ocean.

"We feel this is a good fix," said Alkhatib.

The county engineer said they have onsite inspectors sample the sand to make sure they have the correct product when it's delivered. They'll move to work on the Malacompra area next week. The work is expected to be done in Spring 2019.