July 17, 2013
UPDATE: Army Corps seeks public comment on
emergency nourishment at S-curves
By IRENE NOLAN
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is seeking public comment on the North
Carolina Department of Transportation’s request that the Corps
authorize emergency beach nourishment at the S-curves in northern
The public comment period opened on July 1 and will close at 5 p.m. on July 30.
is seeking the Army Corps authorization to put 1.7 million cubic yards of
dredged sand on the beach at the S-curves and northern Rodanthe to
widen the beach and protect Highway 12 from ocean overwash in storms.
The sand would be placed along 2.13 miles of beach from 1.5 miles north of
the Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge border into the Mirlo Beach
community to just north of the Rodanthe pier.
The public notice
of the request says that the sand would come from either Wimble Shoals,
just offshore of Rodanthe, or the Oregon Inlet area.
Corps says the beach nourishment is expected to provide three-year,
short-term protection of the highway – until DOT bridges the hot-spot
area. Two options are currently being considered – one is about a
two-mile bridge to the west out into the sound and the other is an
elevated bridge over the area.
The project, the notice says,
will begin no earlier than September and will take 60 to 90 days to
complete, with crews working 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
The Corps is seeking comment on the permit from the public and federal, state, and local agencies.
comments received will be considered by the Corps of Engineers to
determine whether to issue, modify, condition or deny a permit for this
proposal,” according to the public notice. “To make this decision,
comments are used to assess impacts on endangered species, historic
properties, water quality, general environmental effects and the other
public interest factors listed above.
“Comments are used in
the preparation of an Environmental Assessment (EA) and/or an
Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) pursuant to the National
Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). Comments are also used to determine
the need for a public hearing and to determine the overall public
interest of the proposed activity.”
The notice also says that
any person may request in writing, within the comment period, that a
public hearing be held to consider the application.
for public hearings shall state, with particularity, the reasons for
holding a public hearing,” the notice says. “Requests for a public
hearing shall be granted, unless the District Engineer determines that
the issues raised are insubstantial or there is otherwise no valid
interest to be served by a hearing.”
Comments must be mailed –
not faxed or e-mailed – to Mr. Bill Biddlecome, Washington Regulatory
Field Office, 2407 West Fifth Street, Washington, North Carolina 27889.
Comments must be received by 5 p.m. on Tuesday, July 30.
FOR MORE INFORMATION
To read the entire public notice, included project description and charts and maps, go to
for a sample letter to support the emergency nourishment provided by
the Dare County Citizen’s Action Committee to Replace the Bonner Bridge