American Society of Civil Engineers


IENCE — A Case Study — The Northern Gold Coast Beach Protection Strategy


by Libby Boak, (Beaches & Waterways, Gold Coast City Council, PO Box 5042, Gold Coast MC, Queensland 9729, Australia), John McGrath, (Beaches & Waterways, Gold Coast City Council, PO Box 5042, Gold Coast MC, Queensland 9729, Australia), and L. Angus Jackson, (Beaches & Waterways, Gold Coast City Council, PO Box 5042, Gold Coast MC, Queensland 9729, Australia and International Coastal Management, PO Box 7196, Gold Coast MC, Queensland 9726, Australia)
Section: Part V Coastal, Estuarine, and Environmental Problems, pp. 3710-3717, (doi:  http://dx.doi.org/10.1061/40549(276)289)

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Document type: Conference Proceeding Paper
Part of: Coastal Engineering 2000
Abstract: Natural environments generally have a limited capacity to sustainably support a level of use. Therefore, as use levels increase, natural systems can no longer sustain impacts without management. The Gold Coast is Australia’s premier tourist destination and offers some of the best and most popular surfing beaches in Australia. Tourism is the Gold Coast’s largest industry however it is at risk of significant losses due to storm events. As a major beachfront tourism area, Gold Coast City Council has recognised the need to provide infrastructure that enhances the natural capacity of the environment (IENCE) to support, manage and protect the beaches which form the base of the tourism industry. The Northern Gold Coast Beach Protection Strategy (NGCBPS) has been developed to provide a sustainable long term coastal management solution for the northern Gold Coast. While an oceanfront boulder wall has been successful in stopping buildings from being lost into the ocean in severe erosion events, it does not protect the beach. Reactive post storm nourishment, is not cost efficient and does not prevent tourist losses from erosion induced slumps. A case study is presented that shows how the Gold Coast City Council is investing in proactive infrastructure that enhances the natural capacity of the environment (IENCE) to support the local tourist economy. The Northern Gold Coast Beach Protection Strategy (NGCBPS) aims to decrease the magnitude of economic loss following storm events by increasing the volume of sand within the storm buffer seaward of the oceanfront boulder wall. The NGCBPS has the dual objectives of increasing the sand volume within the dunal buffer through beach nourishment and improving surf quality through the establishment of an artificial surfing reef. The project will cost a total of $8.8 million dollars (Australian) and is expected to yield benefit-cost ratios of over 60 to 1.


ASCE Subject Headings:
Australia
Beach nourishment
Case studies
Shore protection
Tourism