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Feb 23, 2016 1:56 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

Army Corps Will Restore Destroyed Dunes In Montauk

The Army Corps of Engineers will soon cut into the natural dunes at the eastern end of the beach revetment project, but has pledged to restore the dunes to their original height once the revetment is completed. MRW
Feb 23, 2016 2:09 PM

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has agreed to restore the natural dunes at the eastern and western ends of the protective revetment being constructed along the downtown Montauk beachfront—a shift from the initial plans for the project.

The original agreement and contract with the Army Corps had called only for the areas where the revetment work bites into the natural dunes to be covered with sand and planted with beachgrass at the height of the rest of the revetment, which is about 15 feet.

The natural dunes at the western end of the project, adjacent the Ocean End Hotel, are as high as 24 feet, and up to 20 feet at the eastern end, just east of the Atlantic Terrace motel—meaning that both ends would have been left with a large scar in the natural dune line.

After an appeal by East Hampton Town officials, and some wrangling in recent weeks, the Army Corps has agreed to amend the project plan to restore the full height of the dunes where they were excavated, and replant them with native beachgrass species.

Town Natural Resources Department head Kim Shaw said that the Army Corps has not submitted the revised project plan yet but that the agreement reached recently calls for the restoration of the dune line and the replanting of beach grass. She said the town has also made it clear it wants the dunes to be rebuilt using sand taken from the beach area, not trucked in from upland sand mines, like the sand being used to fill the 13,000-plus sandbags that make up the 3,200-foot revetment.

The destruction of a large chunk of natural dunes by the very first swings of the excavator’s arm when the project got under way in November, and stark photos of the damage on social media, set off a wave of protests for the first two weeks of the construction work, and led to the arrests of more than a dozen people.

The extension of the revetment into the natural dunes at its two ends is necessary to prevent ocean waves from washing around the ends of the revetment, which could threaten its structural integrity.

Alex Walter, executive assistant to Town Supervisor Larry Cantwell, said that the owner of the property where the eastern end will turn into the dune, James Cash, has given the okay for the cuts to be made into his property, which is expected to happen this week.

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Planting with natural grasses - get to that point and the dunes will thrive - thank you US Army Corps of Engineers...
By Vikki K (490), Southampton on Feb 25, 16 8:56 PM
we'll see
By scalloper (17), quogue on Feb 26, 16 6:46 PM
we'll see
By scalloper (17), quogue on Feb 26, 16 6:46 PM