Lantana's seaway completed - Fox29 WFLX TV, West Palm Beach, FL-news & weather

Lantana's seaway completed

By Tasha Martinez
Posted by Rachel Leigh email

LANTANA BEACH, FL (WFLX) - Crews have now finished up repairs to a seawall torn apart by waves.

Last September, Lantana Beach was so badly damaged, the patio of a beach side restaurant collapsed. The city quickly poured $1.5 million into a repair project.

Completed just last week, the three-foot thick seawall has been something many have wished for this area for a long time. "We're thrilled that they've finally done something to preserve this beach," said one resident.

Over the past couple years, heavy winds and surf have nearly destroyed Lantana Beach by rapidly wiping away tons of sand. Last year, a dune restoration project tried to fix things, but that sand was also quickly washed away taking several wooden walkways and the Dune Deck Cafe's sidewalk with it. As a result, city officials decided to build the seawall, taking just two months to complete the job.

The owners of the Dune Deck Cafe tell us they now feel more confident their building won't slide off the cliff.

Made of concrete and reinforced with interlocking sheets of steel pushed deep into the sand, it's supposed to withstand a category four hurricane. "Now, we're just waiting to get beach access back and build our walkways back. And, hopefully, that is done quickly, as well."

Unfortunately, crews can't start building the walkways until after turtle nesting season ends in November. So, until then, beach goers will have to walk all the way around the wall to get on and off the sand.

The Dune Deck Cafe tells us business dropped about 25-percent during construction of the seawall. But, now that's it finished, things are getting back to normal.

Here are some other local efforts to combat beach erosion:

  • Palm Beach: Town leaders plan to reconstruct its sand transfer plant. Earlier this month, they decided to start taking bids from construction companies.
  • Jupiter: Crews keep working to save a public restroom and lifeguard office at the beach. They built a sea wall around the building to prevent any further damage. The beach has been the sight of bad erosion over the years.
  • Singer Island: City officials voted in October to contribute $6 million toward new breakwaters to reduce erosion. The 11 limestone and granite structures would run parallel to the beach for a mile. The project costs $30 million.
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