Southern Palm Beach Island Comprehensive Shoreline Stabilization Project

 Project Overview 

  • Since 2007, the County has completed several engineering studies that have evaluated various long term erosion control alternatives (no action, beach nourishment, groins & breakwaters) for the Central PBC project area.
  • In January 2013, the County completed a final engineering analysis to help identify the most appropriate shore protection plan for the project area. A series of 7 low-profile, shore-perpendicular groins plus a moderate beach fill (~75,000 CY) was the selected plan. 
  • Due to the close proximity of the Town of Palm Beach's proposed South Reach 8 project the two projects are being evaluated under one Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). The USACE requires completion of an EIS under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). The EIS will further evaluate project alternatives & impacts. 
  • The EIS public & permitting agency scoping meetings were held in August 2013. Comments received from the meetings will help influence the final design & permitting of the project. 


  • What is the cost of the project? 

    • The project as presently proposed would cost approximately $5 million to construct. This cost also includes surveys, environmental monitoring and mitigation.
  • How often will the project area require maintenance?
    • The project is designed to last 3 years. Therefore, placement of fill material (~75,000 CY) will be required approximately every 3 years depending on several factors including wave climate, storm impacts and the results of post-construction physical monitoring. 
  • What are the groins made of?
    • The groins will most likely be concrete panels with concrete support piles.
  • How do the groins work?
    • Groins are shore perpendicular structures that disrupt a portion of the sand flowing south along the beach and deposit it on the up drift side of the structure.
  • Have groins been used successfully in other locations?
    • Yes, they have been extensively used throughout the world and along Palm Beach County shorelines for decades. Since groins can cause down drift impact to adjacent beaches, they must be designed to minimize impact.
  • Will the structures have any impact to recreational activities?
    • The goal of the project is to stabilize the beach while maintaining current recreational activities such as surfing, fishing, swimming and snorkeling. 

Preserving our Beach

Preserving the beach and the property values of beachfront properties depends on our understanding the significance of coastal erosion and our willingness to participate in the Comprehensive Palm Beach Island Shoreline Stabilization Project. 

Palm Beach County Environmental Resources Management (ERM) sponsors beach restoration projects throughout the County including dune restoration, beach nourishment, inlet sand transfer operations and construction of groins, breakwaters, and other erosion control structures. Funding for these projects is obtained through County, State, Federal and Local Government. County funds for beach restoration and enhancement projects are primarily obtained through taxes paid by tourists on hotel and motel rooms in the County.

Please see the following links for information related to the Shoreline Stabilization Project: 

Necessary Easement Areas Required

Summary of Estimated Project Costs

In Decemberr 2014 the United States Army Corps of Engineers prepared the Draft Environmental Impact Statement.  Chapter 2, Project Alternatives, page 2-34 provides a table 2-3 that identified the cost of each aspect of the alternatives evaluated and as summary of cost for all alternatives studied.  Based on the USACOE studies, they identified Alternate 2 for the stabilization of the shoreline and restoration of the beach in the Town of South Palm Beach.  The Summary of Cost for this alternate is identified below:


Groin Construction for all seven (7) structures: $700,000

Sand placement of 75,000 cubic yards: $3,450,000

Mitigation of hard bottom: $5,865,150

Total Estimated Cost: $10,015,150


NOTE:  The County has estimated cost to nourish the beach following completion of the project three years post construction and every three years thereafter as approximately $1,500,000.

For more information, contact: Town Manager, Mo Thornton at 561-588-8889,  Palm Beach County Department of Environmental Resources Management at 561-233-2400, or visit their website: