Beach renourishment delayed until April

Charlie Hunsicker
Charlie Hunsicker, Manatee County's Director of Parks and Natural Resources, on Anna Maria Island during a beach renourishment. - Cindy Lane | Sun

ANNA MARIA ISLAND – The beach renourishment project originally slated to begin in February has been pushed back to April, according to Charlie Hunsicker, director of the Manatee County Parks and Natural Resources Department.

The delay is necessitated by an Army Corps of Engineers requirement that Manatee County do a title search on the beach from the northernmost erosion control groin on Cortez Beach to the northern boundary of the county beach, he said.

The project will add sand to the beach in two phases, between 78th Street North in Holmes Beach to approximately Fifth Street South in Bradenton Beach, and to Coquina Beach beginning from Fifth Street South to Longboat Pass.

County funds for the project, estimated between $13-$16 million, come from the tourist tax; state and federal funds also are allocated to the project. Conducting the two projects back to back will save the cost of a second contractor mobilization, around $5 million, Hunsicker said.

The project is expected to take six months to complete, with Gulf-front properties being impacted no more than three days each, he said.