Coastal Structures and Long Term Shore Migration

by William J. Reynolds, US Military Acad, West Point, NY, USA,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Coastal Zone '87


Marco Island is a barrier island located on Florida's Gulf coast. Using an aerial photo time series from 1926 to 1981, shoreline migration is examined. Since shore development on Marco Island began in 1966, a series of coastal structures have been built. Seawalls and artificial dunes were erected to protect beachfront condominiums. A history of these structures was established by aerial photo analysis and review of construction permits. It is shown that the structures have progressed through an escalating sequence. The seawall development is then related to the erosional/depositional history of the island. It is found that the seawalls were constructed on predominantly accretional shores and that subsequent seawall deterioration and replacement was not necessarily due to persistent shore erosion but was perhaps the result of the misplacement of the original structures on an active portion of the beach.

Subject Headings: Shores | Coastal management | Erosion | Coastal protection structures | Sea walls | Barrier islands | Gulfs | Time series analysis | Florida | United States

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