make WWAY your homepage  Become a fan on facebook  Follow us on twitter  Receive RSS Newsfeeds  MEMBERS: Register | Login

North Topsail waiting on re-nourishment plans

North Topsail residents deal with beach erosion every storm and every year. Even after years of planning North Topsail residents may have to wait another year for the town to further plans to re-nourish their beach. The Board of Alderman of North Topsail Island has been planning to get a full-scale beach re-nourishment project off the ground for about four years. But after committee hold ups and funding issues, North Topsail residents may have to wait a little longer for their beach to get some needed attention. After years of beach erosion from hurricanes some homes on north Topsail Island have been left vacant. And the solution seems just as difficult to find today as when the board started to look into this problem four years ago. As of Monday the Board of Alderman has suspended any future beach re-nourishment projects. The committee blames slow progress, and now the town board says a full beach re-nourishment project can't get off the ground until they hire a new committee and figure out how much that will cost. Some local residents say something needs to be done -- and sooner than later. North Topsail resident L.J. Jones Jr. said, "I know when I first moved into the reef we had a good 50 yards at high tide and now we're down to like 20 feet. So it's a lot of slippage, our pools have fallen into the ocean my stairs fell off into the ocean; it's a losing battle right now." The board plans to begin hiring a new committee by late April. If the town board can find and hire a new beach preservation committee, it hopes to have beach re-nourishment projects begin as early as next year.

Disclaimer: Comments posted on this, or any story are opinions of those people posting them, and not the views or opinions of WWAY NewsChannel 3, its management or employees. You can view our comment policy here.


Inlets move south.....

On this general portion of the NC coast, it is well known that most, if not all inlets tend to move south, the general progression. It has been the case for many years with Topsail Island, Figure Eight Island and Wrightsville Beach. This soutward progression is further enhanced by nor'easters and hurricanes. People on North Topsail and on Wrightsville Beach (Shell Island Resort) actually built on land that was not supposed to be developed due to this reason. Incorrect topo maps, etc. were the excuses. We don't hear very much about this do we??? We have all seen the consistent southerly migration of inlets and loss of sand for many years, so what is the real problem here? 1.) Are the people building and buying these places completely ignorant of barrier island and inlet migration? 2.) Do these people realize and understand the migration, yet insist on building there anyway, knowing that the taxpayer will have to clean up their mess when it falls in to the sea? (Shell Island Resort = 20 million clams!) 3.) Why do the local townships with local knowledge even allow building and developement in these precarious migration zones? It wouldn't have anything to do with fat pockets would it? Nooooooooooooo..... It is utterly amazing that the local governments will restrict beach usage to people and pets because of the dicovery of a single "Piping Plover" nest or turtle habitat, but can't seem to stop someone from putting up a 3 million dollar disposable home. The north end of Figure Eight is another prime example of, "Build it any place you can find to sink pilings." I've always realized that money doesn't buy class, but this is glaring proof that it doesn't do much for acquiring common sense either!

No way!

You mean to tell me that the ocean line moves?!? Since when? Guess that is the thought process of the people that build right behind the dunes. You built there, you deal with it with your insurance company, not tax money.

This article is not 100%

This article is not 100% right...The aldermen did not "suspend any future beach re-nourishment projects." Rather, they turned down a bill from a contractor (working on beach nourishment permits) that was nearly 30% over the contracted amount. And that contractor had known about this overage for 4 months and failed to bring it to the town's attention. How unprofessional! And this contractor has already socked the town for $1.6M in costs, and has the potential for $ millions more in the future. I think the aldermen did the right thing. We have a history of cost overruns for our town's projects, and I am glad the aldermen held the line on this one. We can negotiate with this contractor for a lower price, or do the work in-house, or hire a new contractor. A bigger issue than the refusal to overpay this unprofessional contractor is that even if we had permits, the town does not have money (estimated at $34 MILLION in total) to fund a project, and the town's voters durned down a $34 Million bond issue in 2006 by an 80% to 20% margin. The voters of the town are smart...there are just a few (30 or so) structures at risk of 3700 properties in town, and to ask the voters for a tripling of average town property taxes to bail out a few people who made uninformed and unwise property investment choices was the right decision. I am glad the new aldermen are listening to the voters. To do beach nourishment we need real outside funding, from Onslow county, the state of NC, and the federal government. And that seems unlikely, given the budget issues of those government entities.

Alternatives to nourishment

Beach Drainage may offer a more cost effective /localised solution to protect specific properties or sections of coast. This would be dependent on site-specific conditions (it may only slow a long-term erosion process or extend the life of nourishment investment). This technology has had a revival in Europe - particularly in France. More information at USA project review in Footprints03.


I feel if you purchase a home on or near the beach, that is your choice. Along with your choice, I feel that you must well know about erosion. I learned that in 4th or 5th grade. I also feel like I pay enough property taxes of my own that I don;t want to pay for your property to be re-nourishment. Thank you

If you build a house on a

If you build a house on a beach then deal with it yourself. If my lawn gets over grown I mow it. When there was a over a foot of snow on my driveway i shoveled it. You can't stop mother nature. You can't call the town or the state to fix your poor choices.

I'm with ya Judy! Beach

I'm with ya Judy! Beach home owners can pay for it themselves and I'll pay for the things that come up around my house! Like mowing my yard or bringing in dirt for a garden because I live in a low lying area. I get extra wind on the house so I'll pay for a new paint job when it's time too. Rest assured that I won't ask folks out at the beach to help me pay for these things.