South Amelia Island Shore Stabilization Project


Location: Amelia Island - Nassau County, Florida

Client: South Amelia Island Shore Stabilization Association (SAISSA); Nassau County, FL; Florida Park Service, FDEP

Tasks: Engineer of Record for stabilization of the southern four miles of Atlantic Ocean shoreline of Amelia Island, including Amelia Island State Park; restore beach and dunes. Provide all permitting, design, and construction management.


Olsen Associates, Inc. has been the long-term consultant to the SAISSA-MSBU since its formation in 1992.  Initial beach restoration project construction was completed in 1994 along 18,000 ft. of privately owned shorefront and included the placement of 2.6 Mcy of sand.  The consultant was responsible for all plan formulation, sand search, permitting, design and construction management.  The project has been continuously monitored on an annual basis since that time.

Since 2001, the Florida Park Service (FPS-FDEP) has been a project co-sponsor with the inclusion of the Amelia Island State Park into the overall project. For the Park shoreline, OAI prepared a feasibility study in 2001 of alternative structural solutions for the Park’s severe erosion.  That study eventually led to the first planned renourishment of the project fill and the design, permitting and construction of a 1,600 ft rock terminal groin and a 400-ft long detached breakwater seaward of Amelia Island State Park.  The beach fill include the placement of over 2.0 million cubic yards of sand.

The structures, built into the 2002 beach fill project, were constructed to reduce end losses from the beach renourishment fill, to recapture over 150 acres of Park oceanfront shoreline lost to chronic erosion over the past three decades, and to preclude winter flooding of an environmentally unique maritime forest and associated ecosystem.  Construction costs of the structural stabilization totaled $5.0M (approx.).  All work performed for this project (engineering, construction, etc) since 2002 has been cost-shared through the State of Florida Beach Management Program.  The project has resulted in the remediation of over 3,200-ft of publicly owned shorefront and the reconstitution of high quality habitat for shorebird and sea turtle nesting.  The nearshore structures have likewise become an intensely utilized recreational fishing destination and amenity to the Park.  Long term monitoring continues to be performed.
As a non-federally constructed engineered beach project, the South Amelia Island Shore Stabilization Project is eligible for post-disaster funding from FEMA, and OAI created and actively manages the Beach Monitoring and Maintenance Plan for the SAISS-MSBU and FPS.  At the authorization of the project clients in 2007, OAI reinitiated a Sand Search and other actions required for permitting of the next renourishment.  In May 2011, work commenced on the second project renourishment (2 Mcy), and is anticipated to be complete by September 2011.

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