A major dredging project is currently underway at Tigertail, Hideaway Beach and Sanddollar Island in Marco Island, Florida.
The project is intended to improve marine navigation and shoreline protection around the islands by deepening channels and improving the quality of the sand beach.
The dredging project began in the summer of 2019 and is expected to be completed by early 2021. The work includes removing sand from the seafloor, which will improve navigation by creating deeper channels for boats to navigate safely. Additionally, the dredged sand will be used to replenish beaches around the islands, resulting in a healthier shoreline that can better withstand erosion due to wave action.
The dredging project is being funded by a combination of local, state and federal sources. The City of Marco Island is providing funding for the project through its Capital Improvement Program while also partnering with the Florida Department of Environmental Protection’s Coastal Management Program and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to complete the work.
The dredging process begins with surveyors using sonar technology to map out an area for dredging operations. Once this is complete, a specialized dredge vessel is brought in to begin removing sand from the seafloor. This process can take several weeks depending on the depth of sediment being removed and the amount of material needed for beach nourishment.
The project has already had a positive impact on navigation safety around Tigertail, Hideaway Beach and Sanddollar Island – with deeper channels created it’s easier for boats to access these areas without running aground or getting stuck in shallow waters. Additionally, beachgoers will benefit from improved shorelines as more sand becomes available to rebuild eroded dunes along Marco Island’s coastline.
Overall, this dredging project is an important step in ensuring safe navigation around Marco Island as well as protecting its valuable beaches from further erosion due to wave action. The work should be completed by 2021 and residents and visitors alike can look forward to improved water access as well as healthier shorelines around Tigertail, Hideaway Beach and Sanddollar Island for years to come.