Sedimental Journey

by James A. Bailard, P.E., (M.ASCE), Pres.; Scour Systems, Inc., Carpenteria, California,


Serial Information: Civil Engineering—ASCE, 2001, Vol. 71, Issue 3, Pg. 66-69


Document Type: Feature article

Abstract: A numerical shoreline evolution model was used to examine the shoreline changes associated with the release of 2.3 million m³ of beach-quality sediment from behind Matilija Dam in Ventura County, California. Three alternatives were considered for delivering the sediment to the mouth of the Ventura River: pipeline pumping, trucking, and fluvial transport. The latter involves gradually notching the dam. Each alternative was found to produce a buildup of sand on Pierpont Beach, but with differing rates of accretion and downcoast transport. Rates of sand influx into Ventura Harbor were found to increase sharply in the short-term, particularly for the pumping alternative. The trucking and fluvial transport alternatives were found to be the least impacting, particularly if carried out over a long period of time. All the alternatives were found to produce significant long-term benefits to the coastline.

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