Putting sand on the beach. That’s finally beginning as Marinex Construction Co. of North Charleston “stages” its dredge, two miles of pipe and other equipment at Pawleys Island.
Over the next three or four months, the dredge and earth-moving equipment will pump sand from “borrow” areas offshore and place it on the island.
The 1.1 million cubic-yard project will result in an “engineered beach” that engineers expect will help keep much of the sand on the oceanfront at Pawleys Island for more than a decade.
The concept of an engineered beach also means that as erosion occurs, it will be easier to build it back in future years.
On Monday, Oct. 14, Town Administrator Ryan Fabbri said that Marinex would start the dredging Tuesday, or Wednesday for sure.
Another mile of “subline” was to be laid over the weekend.
The men and machines will work around the clock until the job is completed.
Coastal Science & Engineering will be keeping the Town of Pawleys Island updated on the project.
While many people were happy that the beach renourishment project is getting underway, that’s not a universal sentiment.
During the public comment portion of the regula Town Council meeting, Stacy Clardy said that he doesn’t think an engineered beach will work.
“You can’t put an engineered beach down at the South End, if you know anything about anything,” he said.
“When we had this last hurricane, I sat on my front porch, rocking in my chair … and the ocean was breaking between the houses, into the road and into the creek.”
“There’s only one way you can maintain that. That’s to have a source of sand that you’ve gotta put on top of that every time we have a Northeaster, or a storm.”
Clardy said there are a number of other people who believe like he does, and he gave Mayor Jimmy Braswell a stack of letters that they wrote to Council members expressing their opinions on the project.
Braswell said he would give the letters to Fabbri and they would see to it that the letters were given to Town Council members.