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NEW - Boca Del Rio beach

Posted By: Glorias

NEW - Boca Del Rio beach - 10/02/11 02:48 AM

Is it true that with the new paved road to the bridge they are going to close Boca Del Rio beach front to traffic and Dave Mitchell has a contract to dredge a new beach?
Posted By: SFJeff

Re: NEW - Boca Del Rio beach - 10/02/11 03:13 PM

'hope not (dredging never is w/ out consequence.) How about it they clean up the beach in front of Central Park/Big Daddy's first, eh?
Posted By: Diane Campbell

Re: NEW - Boca Del Rio beach - 10/02/11 03:18 PM

Agree with the Central Park beach idea. I've proposed to both BTB and SPBA that we clean out the debris by the old pier, resurface the pier a little and put out some picnic tables. Put steps into the sea, put out safety buoys and have a real central park beach. All the elements are there, we just need to tweak it in the right direction.
Want to try to make it so?
Posted By: Diane Campbell

Re: NEW - Boca Del Rio beach - 10/02/11 03:21 PM

About closing the beach to traffic in the Boca Del Rio area ..... there is an issue for many of the beachfront properties in that they don't have a "back-door" entrance to an alternate road. I'm told that planning departments will not approve landlocked parcels, so the idea of completely closing off the beach-road is a toughie to contemplate.
Posted By: SimonB

Re: NEW - Boca Del Rio beach - 10/02/11 03:38 PM

Quite a few of us that live on the beach would like to see some type of divider in the middle of each block that would leave the area accessible to local traffic, emergency and maintenance vehicles and people that want to use the beachfront.
Posted By: Glorias

Re: NEW - Boca Del Rio beach - 10/02/11 04:05 PM

Yes, we have been trying to promote that idea for years. Block the beach in the middle of each block so there would be no thru traffic. That would be perfect. EXCEPT places like the high school where they should block it on both ends and the tourists (and us locals) would have nice beach they could lie down on and snooze safely.
Posted By: PJBELIZE

Re: NEW - Boca Del Rio beach - 10/02/11 05:15 PM

Glorias , I had suggested the high school block be blocked off to traffic in a post about swimming safety.I agree with your idea also about blocking the middle of each beach block to stop thru traffic. That's a great idea , it leaves homeowners access ,but stops thru traffic.A string of swimming buoys at the high school block would be a great addition for swimming safety .
Posted By: Phil

Re: NEW - Boca Del Rio beach - 10/02/11 05:24 PM

Dredging is the only way we can get sand. Dredging isn't bad. It's how and where it's dredged. We also need to look at how we clean the seagrass as that is the largest cause of beach errosion (other than occassional large storms) and probably needs to be reburied at it's source higher up the beach.
Posted By: PJBELIZE

Re: NEW - Boca Del Rio beach - 10/02/11 05:31 PM

Phil -you are correct,dredging is not bad if done correctly and boca de rio park needs sand to cover and protect the sona tubes from damage. We need some areas to swim in deep enough 5 to 6 feet deep ,but not in the channel at the cut dodging boats
Posted By: Phil

Re: NEW - Boca Del Rio beach - 10/02/11 05:42 PM

Well that also goes back to my points on boats and safety. We have areas already that deep out toward the end of piers so why create more closer to shore that increase beach errosion. Move the boats out and safely use what we already have. Look at the area just South of the High School that was hand dredged six months or so ago. We haven't had one decent storm yet and all the sand AND twenty linnear feet or more has erroded away. Don't fight nature, try and work with it.
Posted By: Bear

Re: NEW - Boca Del Rio beach - 10/05/11 12:41 AM

Originally Posted by Phil
Dredging is the only way we can get sand. Dredging isn't bad. It's how and where it's dredged. We also need to look at how we clean the seagrass as that is the largest cause of beach errosion (other than occassional large storms) and probably needs to be reburied at it's source higher up the beach.


Phil, talk to me about the turtle grass cleaning...I'm curious to see if its what I think you mean...
Posted By: Diane Campbell

Re: NEW - Boca Del Rio beach - 10/05/11 01:41 PM

Topic - raking sea grass from the beach (not digging it out from the sea).
Most of our visitors prefer to see the beaches raked clean. Raking the beach has consequences - take a good look at the wheelbarrows of seagrass that are carried away and (depending on the skill of the raker) you may find that 50% of what is in the wheelbarrow is sand, not sea grass. A couple of years of this and you easily loose a few feet of land in front of your property --- we have neighbors who have lost a good 15 feet - maybe 20. Their "seagrass" has been taken to a nearby lot that used to be low and subject to flooding. That lot is now a sandy high piece of ground, and the sea is marching up towards the beachfront gardens.

When massive amounts of seagrass arrive after a big storm it makes sense to take the top layers off - that seagrass tends not to have too much sand in it, but for daily maintenance, there are better alternative ways to deal with this issue. Might take a bit more work, and supervision of rakers who would like to have an easier day of it, but .....
Some people dig a trench along the beach and put the seagrass in it, covering it with sand. This does not remove anything from the beach, and leaves it nice and clean. Another thing is that after weeds and brush are removed from the beach area, wind does it's share of erosion - you will find that your property develops dunes just back from the water's edge. By scooping up the sand that has blown away from the water and up into the "dune" you can simply cover the seagrass and have a clean looking beach and a relatively stable shoreline.
Posted By: Rykat

Re: NEW - Boca Del Rio beach - 10/05/11 01:56 PM

Never have any of these problems here in Del Boca Vista! smile
Posted By: Phil

Re: NEW - Boca Del Rio beach - 10/05/11 05:18 PM

Bear. Diane nailed it.
Posted By: Bear

Re: NEW - Boca Del Rio beach - 10/05/11 11:12 PM

Originally Posted by Phil
Bear. Diane nailed it.


Phil, Diane, thanks. Some of the explanation I had deduced and kinda figured out but some was quite surprising! Thanks again.
Posted By: Glorias

Re: NEW - Boca Del Rio beach - 10/06/11 01:58 AM

I don't believe I have never seen so many positive responses and suggestions on a topic of this importance. Dredging does have it's pros and cons but the bottom line is that it has it pros as well as it's cons.

I noticed a place some years ago just south of Caribbean Villas that was reclaiming the beach in a very simple, cheap and unique way. The property had lost so much beach frontage from tropical storms that the fence on the property actually came down. There was a jetty extending out about 100 feet perpenducular to the shore on the property line of Caribbean Villas and the one joining it on the south. A private residence but with about 200 ft of frontage.

There was a pier that had been concreted totally so it was in essence a jetty too extending about 75 feet or more out from the shore line. They filled some flour sacks with with a dry mixture of beach sand and cement and placed them from one jetty to the other about 30' or so from the beach. They stacked them until they were a foot above the water kind of like a sea wall.

The next small blow that came like they do every few months it was amazing to see how much sand gathered between the "sea wall" and the beach. Another blow or so and so much sand had gathered that it covered up the "sea wall" and it was no longer visible. Then they raised the "sea wall" about another foot and the next few blows covered that one.

They repeated this over a 6 or 12 month period and actually built or reclaimed over 30 foot of beach and it was up to 2 and a half feet deep. Amazing. Someone involved in that was taking pictures and sent them around to different people including Juan Allamillia on the town councel. Juan had some sort of supervision of the beach front and was going to follow up on that and see about building more beach front in a similar fashion. It seemed like a grand idea because it cost next to nothing and the sand that was reclaimed was that that was simply suspended in the water that the blow had picked up between the reef and the shoreline. No harm, no fowl.

Maybe Juan would have some information on that. It seems it would work all up and down the island restoring beaches cheaply and with no harm or dredging. Seems worth a try.
Posted By: Bear

Re: NEW - Boca Del Rio beach - 10/06/11 02:31 AM

Interesting stuff again Glorias. I'm curious did anyone try to evaluate what happened to the beach area on the down current side of the seawalls? My wife was trying to explain some issues with currents and tidal geomorphology (changes in land and sea bottom due to tides currents etc) and how they can increase beach loss in those areas.
Posted By: Glorias

Re: NEW - Boca Del Rio beach - 10/06/11 02:38 AM

Bear,

There are definitely some ramifications to this but it was developed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on the East coast of the US and is pretty sound. There is some trial and error to the procedure and even the Army corps cannot get it right every time. There was no noticable problems in the case in point but the process works gradually so there is time to reverse and stop any negative effects in any particular situation. This would be dynamite if the town officials would just engage.
Posted By: Diane Campbell

Re: NEW - Boca Del Rio beach - 10/06/11 02:41 AM

The system described is called a groyne. Not new or unique at all but in the right conditions it is remarkably effective. Different locations work differently due to sand source & currents --- should one decide to use such a system it might be helpful to begin small and see the results before jumping in whole hog and possibly making things worse instead of better.
After all --- the island was growing bit by bit all by itself before we got here .....
PS - a friend of mine had one in Placencia that worked very well indeed - she was sued by an neighbor who felt it was a bad idea, was forced by the Supreme Court to remove it --- and the properties both north and south of the groyne lost significant beach. Then again, Placencia is built of river wash not coral sand.
Posted By: Glorias

Re: NEW - Boca Del Rio beach - 10/06/11 02:48 AM

Diane,
Interesting. Did the folks in Placencia have the jetties on each end? That is a big key. I'll try to come up with some photos of the one I'm speaking of in a day or so. I do know that in this instance the properties on either side lost no beach even though the one in question did gain significantly.
Posted By: Diane Campbell

Re: NEW - Boca Del Rio beach - 10/06/11 02:57 AM

No the folks in Placencia did something very well studied and ecological - I think they used logs actually. It was a really cool thing. I guess my point is that the groins tend to work, but you might need a permit to keep one. I've seen some subtle ones in play along the shore here - boulders under piers ....... they attract fish, hold sand, and are not "construction" in a way that excites people into court.
Indeed the beach on either side of the groyne grew - one more significantly than the other, but both benefitted.
Posted By: Bear

Re: NEW - Boca Del Rio beach - 10/06/11 03:03 AM

Whoa...wow G & D this is very cool stuff, I have some research to do...
Posted By: Glorias

Re: NEW - Boca Del Rio beach - 10/06/11 02:11 PM

Originally Posted by Diane Campbell
No the folks in Placencia did something very well studied and ecological - I think they used logs actually. It was a really cool thing. I guess my point is that the groins tend to work, but you might need a permit to keep one. I've seen some subtle ones in play along the shore here - boulders under piers ....... they attract fish, hold sand, and are not "construction" in a way that excites people into court.
Indeed the beach on either side of the groyne grew - one more significantly than the other, but both benefitted.


Diane,
I just realized I didn't completely explain the system yesterday. The sacks of cement/sand set up and get hard but because they are less than a foot above the water level when they are set in place when the rough seas go over the wall with the suspended sand it settles down because of the wall and the sand is deposited. BUT the most interesting thing is that it also covers the wall completely so it is not visible. It even raises the level of the sand 10 feet or so on the sea side so it is a gradual slope. And It stays that way even in future rough seas. Of course as I explained you can then add more height to the wall up to a point and keep going higher. It will only go so high depending on the physical situation of the location.

I found a few great photos that will show without a doubt this works but I don't know how to put them on the form. Tell me how to put them on or give me your email and I'll send them to you.



Posted By: Diane Campbell

Re: NEW - Boca Del Rio beach - 10/06/11 03:38 PM

I'm curious as to the maximum heights and other limiting factors for the sytem you describe because it does not have the porosity to allow water to seep back into the sea after washing over it. This factor what eventually causes all the sea walls around here to fail sooner or later.
The beauty of the geo-tube is that it's just sand in a very strong porous bag. The water seeps through it - sand is left behind, but the water goes back to the sea. The stones under the piers have a similar property although they are not as stable because a big storm can move them around if they are not contained.

Anyway - sounds like my groyne story and your cement bag story are about two different systems - each having an application in various settings. All valuable info and yes I'd be very interested in seeing the info you have. I'll PM you with an address to send.

As Bucky Fuller said ...... "You can only learn more - it is impossible to learn less!".
Posted By: Diane Campbell

Re: NEW - Boca Del Rio beach - 10/06/11 03:40 PM

One last caveat to all reading this ....... the seabed is the property of GoB. You need a permit to install stuff on it.
Posted By: Glorias

Re: NEW - Boca Del Rio beach - 10/10/11 02:53 PM

Dianne,
I'm working on posting the photos. I would like the others that have an interest to see them too. It may take a day or so because I'm busy but am making progress.

I believe this is a very important system for building beach front at little cost and with no damage to the ecology. I feel sure that once GOB understands this they will embrace it with open arms.
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