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Carolina Beach dredging, renewal project nears end

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CAROLINA BEACH, NC (WWAY) -- After weeks of construction, crews in Carolina Beach are working hard to finish dredging and the beach renourishment by next week.

The project manager says it is crucial they finish dredging in time to protect homes, the environment and to get out of the way of tourists who will soon crowd the beach. They say contractors are working 24/7 to clear the beach by May 31. They say there is about 4,000 feet left to build from the pier to the boardwalk.

"They're making about 1,000 feet of production everyday. Since Monday, they've made 10,000 feet," Bob Keistler the project manager says.

Once the dredging is finished the sand will come as high as these blue flags. Bob Keistler says without the sand placement tthere would not be a recreation area on the beach or structures nearby. He says the project is hugely important, especially for houses.

"There's studies done that projects that have federal storm damage reduction projects, when hurricanes hit, they have received much less damage. It minimizes the risks from storms," Bob Keistler says.

Keistler says they had to request an extension and special permit for the late start, because it is sea turtle nesting season. A marine biologist says the Pleasure Island Sea Turtle Project is monitoring the project's affect on turtles.

"To document whether there is any nesting activity and note in the event if a nest does occur that we have a plan to avoid any impacts," Doug Piatowski a marine biologist says.

All of the work is planned to be done with the equipment cleared off the beach by May 31.

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