Cooks Beach Coastal Management
moving away from traditional coastal management structures to holistic solutions.
Thames Coromandel District Council
Coastal, Planning, Ecology
4Sight Consulting assisted Thames Coromandel District Council in the design, consenting and construction of a back-stop wall and nourishment management regime at the eastern end of Cooks Beach to address erosion issues caused, in part, by the installation of a large seawall (pictured in the gallery below).
In order to determine the best solution to mitigate the erosion, the team began by analysing the extent and cause of erosion over time. Their findings were then incorporated into the final concept designs for the nourishment regime, which will eventually be supported by a buried back-stop seawall positioned to protect key infrastructure. We expect that the nourished sand will ultimately be eroded by storms and tides, but this has been allowed for by planting dune building species above the crest of the buried wall. With time, the dune building species will begin to help the retention of sand at this location, although it will require regular maintenance to ensure the project's success.
As is often the case with these types of projects, the question has been raised by locals about the viability of either reshaping or replacing the sand regularly. The analogy we like to think of is we all spend plenty of time and money cutting grass around our homes with the understanding that it will grow back. It's essentially the same principle for beaches - if we want to continue to enjoy sandy beaches, we need to start maintaining them to keep them at the status quo.