The groynes and structures in place along Byron Bay’s Main Beach have been the cause for debate since they were put in place.
The conversations will continue one Wednesday as council invites the community to find out more about its new Main Beach Shoreline Project at a drop-in information session from 4pm until 6pm at the Byron Bay Surf Club.
Council’s Coastal and Biodiversity Coordinator, Chloe Dowsett says the Main Beach Shoreline Project is a big study we’re embarking on to assess feasible options for the modification of the coastal protection groynes and structures in place along Byron Bay’s Main Beach, which are degraded,’
‘It’s about improving protection while retaining what people love most about Main Beach,’ she said.
‘The current infrastructure is not up to contemporary or conventional coastal engineering standards and we need to be prepared for extreme coastal storms or series of storms in the future.’
Ms Dowsett says the groynes and coastal protection structure on Main Beach have a critical role to play in protecting the Byron Bay town centre from coastal erosion and underlying long-term movement of this shoreline towards the land. ‘They also impact on how the sand moves, what the beach looks like and how people move from the surrounding areas such as parks and car parks onto the beach.
Ms Dowsett says that over the next two years, the Main Beach Shoreline Project will use the most contemporary coastal science and modelling to find the best possible options and solutions for modification of the structure so we can improve our coastal protection, public safety, amenity and aesthetics of the foreshore area.
Council has engaged Bluecoast Consulting Engineers to conduct the extensive two-year study. The project is being funded by the NSW State Government through the Coastal and Estuary Grants Program with matching funds from Council. It is expected to cost $300,000 including the stage 1 investigation and further phases of cost-benefit analysis and detailed design.
‘The project uses what we call a ‘multiple lines of evidence’ approach which includes coastal modelling, geomorphological assessment of the shoreline, collection of wave data and expert observations. Social, environmental and economic values will also be explored and considered,’ says Ms Dowsett.
‘This is a huge project with a lot of complex and academic information for the community to take in and that’s why we’re hosting this information session with further workshops with stakeholders and interest groups as the study progresses.’
Information about the Main Beach Shoreline Project including a Project Fact Sheet and FAQs will be regularly updated on Council’s website: www.byron.nsw.gov.au/main-beach-shoreline-project.