Lido Beach Restoration
Beach season will be here before you know it, and one local beach is getting a makeover just in time. Starting this week, the Lido Beach restoration project is underway. “Lido Beach was severely impacted when Tropical Storm Debbie came through," explained city engineer Alex Davis Shaw. "But in addition to that, we've had a lot of weather -- although not declared storms -- that have continued to erode and, especially toward the south of the beach, you can see we've got escarpments almost a person high."
Lido Beach still showcases the gorgeous fine, white sand Sarasota County is known for, but it's nowhere near the size it once was. “I think it was much wider. A lot more room for vacationers and residents,” observed Beth Ann Delaney, who said she's been visiting the beach since 1975.
Beth Ann has noticed small changes before, but says Debbie made a drastic difference. County officials say she's right. “From the Debbie event only, we lost 100,000 cubic yards. And since that time, we've continued to lose sand. We did a survey in July and we were at 167,000 cubic yards of sand lost,” Shaw continued.
This week, workers began rebuilding the beach. The equivalent of more than 60 Olympic-sized swimming pools full of sand is being dredged from the new pass shoal. It will be spread across Lido Beach from Lido Pool to Ted Sperling Park. “People can expect to see between 80 and 100 feet of new sand to lounge on, to walk on, and to enjoy,” Shaw said.
The project will cost around $3.5 million, paid for by federal and state funds. But it's just a start. A more permanent solution involving more than one million cubic yards of sand is in the works. “The long-range project, the one we're working with the Army Corps on, is designed to provide that protective barrier so that we always have some sand there," Shaw added. "So if we have an event, we've got some protection between the water and the properties."
Source: Mike Bennett / Fox 13 Sarasota / 16 Jan 2015