Document Type



Virginia Institute of Marine Science

Publication Date



The focus of this study was to research the resiliency of rock/sand/plant living shoreline protection systems. These systems have been used in Chesapeake Bay for 40 years to reduce erosion, protect infrastructure, and create habitat that is disappearing from the shoreline as sea level rises. The goal was to determine how they have been affected by storm surge and associated wind-driven waves, sea-level rise. This data informed adaptive management strategies to create site-specific morphologically-resilient projects.

The objectives of this 3-year project is monitoring the effectiveness of nature-based resilience projects over time such as those that use hybrid living shoreline management strategies on medium to high wave energy shorelines. To create effective shore protection on these higher energy shorelines, structures are needed in addition to sand and plants to maintain ecosystems along the shoreline. In particular, rock sills and headland breakwaters are used in Chesapeake Bay to maintain continuous coastal profile and a more natural land-water interface.



living shorelines, sea-level rise, Werowocomoco National Park, Haven Beach, Hull Springs Farm, Virginia Institute of Marine Science