Palm Beach reviews high-cost shore protection

Workers place sand at Midtown Beach. (Credit: Palm Beach Daily News)
Workers place sand at Midtown Beach. (Credit: Palm Beach Daily News)

Palm Beach is re-evaluating the town’s increasingly expensive shore-protection program.

The town periodically hires companies to dredge offshore sand and deposit it at Midtown Beach and Reach 7, designated as “filler beaches.”

The cost of the sand fill at Midtown Beach last winter was $17.6 million, $6 million more than the town had budgeted.

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The town’s coastal protection program cost an average of $8.4 million a year when the town council approved the program in 2013. Looking ahead,  Palm Beach expects costs of nearly $10 million a year.

Public works director Paul Brazil told the town’s Shore Protection Board that a “bare bones” version of the coastal protection program would cut the projected annual cost to approximately $6 million.

Llwyd Ecclestone, chairman of the Shore Protection Board, said he wanted more time to review the program and suggested a special board meeting to discuss it. [Palm Beach Daily News] — Mike Seemuth