Document Type



Virginia Institute of Marine Science

Publication Date



The Virginia Institute of Marine Science, together with other state agencies, has a continuing interest in preserving the coastline of Virginia, particularly, the Atlantic coastline in the vicinity of the resort city of Virginia Beach. Because a well maintained beach can serve several purposes , e.g., ( 1) providing public recreational areas, (2) protecting valuable properties that are located near coastline , and (3) reducing the rate of land loss, a great deal of efforts has been devoted to understand the processes that affect the change of shoreline. Among several erosion forces , waves are especially important elements as they can alter the shoreline significantly.

One may use any of several approaches to maintain a beach properly, and perhaps may use all available approaches in parallel to obtain the best results. In the coastal sector of Virginia Beach, beach nourishment using_material from inland borrow pits has been done constantly during the last two decades . It has become more difficult to find land sources of good beach-quality sand . Sand loss from the beach due to both shore normal and longshore transport creates the need to find a reliable source of good quality sand for future use.

Sandbridge Shoal ( Fig. 1) located approximately 20 miles south of Virginia Beach and 3 miles offshore , has been identified as a potential source of good beach-quality sand (Kimball and Dame , 1989). Use of the sand resources there, however, causes a great deal of concern that dredging may result in severe beach erosion at Sandbridge due to alternation of the wave transformation process .


Ocean waves -- Virginia -- Sandbridge Beach, Dredging -- Environmental aspects -- Virginia -- Sandbridge Beach

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