Sandwich Conservation Commission Approves Town Neck Renourishment Project

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SANDWICH – The town of Sandwich’s Conservation Commission recently granted approval for a proposed project to continue the replenishment of Town Neck Beach.

The proposal, which still requires state and federal permits, would remove roughly 250,000 cubic yards of material from the Scusset State Beach Reservation sand basin on the north side of the Cape Cod Canal to be placed on Town Neck.

“We’ve been doing the scientific analysis for probably the last two or three years to be able to put the permit request together and those were all filed with the appropriate federal and state and local agencies in June,” said Bud Dunham, the Sandwich Town Manager.

Dunham said the town hopes to have permit approvals by the end of next year.

A $3 million nourishment project which added over 100,000 cubic yards of material on Town Neck dredged from the Cape Cod Canal channel was completed in 2016.

Officials still believe the beach needs over 400,000 cubic yards of sand to make up for materials lost to erosion.

Dunham said if approved, the project would be a first in the state to allow an offshore borrow site for sand renourishment and erosion prevention.

“If this gets approved the really nice thing about it is it gets tied directly to our prior permits that we have on the 400,000 cubic yard project on Town Neck,” Dunham said.

“The beauty of that is any time we would renew those permits, hopefully, they would renew at the same time.”

The town is trying to get permanent approval for replenishment sites, including the canal.

The canal gets dredged roughly every five to seven years and the town is trying to get that and the Scusset site dedicated to replenishing Town Neck.

The town is also awaiting a report from the Army Corps of Engineers, Section 1-11, which is studying the effects of the east end jetty on the flow of sediment.

“It’s been over 100 years since the canal jetty has been preventing the natural migration of sand so we are hopeful that if we get these two permits we’ll be able to sort of sustain what we put up there and it gives us some sort of hope for the future,” Dunham said.

Dunham thinks it would be a few years after receiving approval before any work would likely begin.

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