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OCEAN ISLE BEACH—The American Shore and Beach Preservation Association (ASBPA) has named Ocean Isle Beach a winner of one of the 2008 Best Restored Beach Awards.
According to a press release, Ocean Isle Beach began seeking funding for a federal restoration program after Hurricane Hugo hit in 1989. A capital reserve savings account was opened for the town’s portion of the funding. In 2001, coastal engineers began dredging sand from Shallotte Inlet, which not only extended beach renourishment two additional years, but also deepened the channel for boaters.
“The Ocean Isle project is an excellent example of regional sand management in an area that has limited offshore sand reserves,” Mayor Debbie Smith said. “Since its inception, the Ocean Isle Beach restoration project has been distinguished by exceptional project performance and habitat restoration for endangered sea turtles and shorebirds. In addition, it has provided storm protection and greatly increased recreational space. This project has been such a huge success and provided such great benefit that we continue to set aside funding annually in a capital reserve account to perform maintenance when needed.”
Other 2008 Best Restored Beach Awards went to: the beaches of North Boca Raton, Fla.; Olympic Sculpture Park, Seattle, Wash.; Destin and Walton County, Fla.; Kuhio Beach, Waikiki, HI; and Venice Beach, Fla.
Each coastal community nominated its own restoration projects, and a panel of coastal managers and scientists selected winners based on economic and ecological benefits, short- and long-term success of the project, and challenges the community overcame during the course of restoration.
The Best Restored Beach Award was created in 2001, ASBPA president Harry Simmons said.
More than 370 beaches in the United States have been restored, including Miami Beach, Coney Island, and Venice Beach, Calif.