Seawall Q and A - and Related Documents

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1.  Will a seawall be installed the length of the County’s beaches?
No. Seawalls are only being discussed in small section the Painters Hill area where the homes are most threatened.  Out of 140+ property owners, a little over 20 of the most threatened properties are working with the county to install a seawall. 
          The only other seawall being discussed is a buried retaining wall proposed for approximately one mile at the north end of the City of Flagler Beach where SR A1A is threatened.  This project will be designed and permitted by the FDOT.

2. What property numbers addresses/area are participating?
Please click here to see the attached map with the addresses shown for the property owners that have indicated they are planning to participate in doing a seawall. 

3. Will the County also be adding sand dunes to the construction?
A minimal amount of sand and vegetation will be added in front of (beachside/east of) the seawall as required by FDEP permit. 

4. Describe a return sea wall, and who will be required to install them.
The return sea wall is simply the termination return end of seawall. It will generally run 30ft westward from the end of a seawall.  It is required at end of each seawall where the sea wall stops and generally prevents undermining of the backside of seawall from the side.  Where there are continuous sea wall sections, a return sea wall is not required.

5. Will owners have to pay for the seawall?
Yes.  The County did cover the preliminary engineering and design, but homeowners will be required to pay for the remaining costs which include final design, permitting, construction, closeout/certification and financing – should they chose to finance the cost.  

6. Do I make a lump payment up-front or is there a financing vehicle available?
While property owners can make payment in full, the County is also offering to create a voluntary special assessment district for those in the seawall project area.  The costs of the seawall project will be collected from the property owners over a period of 15 years.  The easement and voluntary assessment agreement is under final review and COMING SOON when completed will be available by clicking here for anyone who would like to participate.

7. What is the construction cost of the seawall project?  Are these costs final costs? 
For a table showing the latest engineers estimated construction costs (June 2017), prepared by Taylor Engineering please click here.   These costs are not all inclusive as a total cost nor final costs. For example, the engineers estimate does not include financing costs, final design costs, and other miscellaneous costs related to the project.  The costs are not final as the project has not been bid yet for construction or financing.

8. Will end properties requiring sea wall return walls have to pay for an additional 30’ to 60’ of construction?
The County’s intent is to spread the cost of any sea wall returns equally among those properties protected by the contiguous sea wall.  We will divide return wall costs by the number of participating properties and charge each lot equally. This differs from the regular seawall costs running parallel to the ocean. For these seawalls, each property owner will be required to fund the actual number of linear feet along their property ocean frontage.

9.  For seawall properties, will the county place sand in front (oceanside) and behind (house side) the constructed wall? 
Yes and Yes.   These are required as part of the permitting and construction process.

10.  Will the County plant vegetation?  What type?
Yes, as required by the permit.  Typically this will be sea oats.

11. Is there anything holding up the Seawall project? 
Yes.  There are many smaller issues that we are working through but there are two main ones holding up the project. First is the finalization of the agreements with property owners, which we should be sending out next week and are needed for final permitting.  The second is the Sea Turtle issue.  We have had to pursue federalizing the project because that is a requirement of  permitting construction during Sea Turtle season.

12.  What if we cannot construct seawalls during Hurricane season?  
If this ends up being the case and the County is able to move forward with sand placement, the County would seek to place sand in front of the participating seawall property to buy time until the end of Turtle season.

13. Are their plans I can look at for the project and my property in particular? 
Please click here for the plans.  

14. What is the timeline for this project? 
Unfortunately, we currently cannot provide an accurate timeline of the project until we are able to overcome the Sea Turtle issue. We are preparing the construction and financial packages which will be put out for bid once that is resolved. We believe we have an upcoming breakthrough in this issue.

15. Does the County plan to harm any Sea Turtles/Nesting during the project?
No.  There are many rules for working during Sea Turtle Season designed for the protection of Sea Turtles and their nesting activities.  These are all contained in a 17 page biological opinion from the US Fish and Wildlife Service and have detailed requirements.  The County has enlisted the help of our local Sea Turtle Group and outside consultant specifically for this purpose.  Their work will involve daily nest check, construction site inspection, testing and if necessary nest relocation.  In fact, we believe the dunes project the County is planning will improve nesting opportunities now and prevent the flooding of nest where there are bluffs or not dunes at all.

16. Will the County be doing more seawall projects in this area in the future?  
The answer at this time is no.  However, the data and designs the County has completed for this project would assist property owners in the future to streamline the process for any sea wall projects, if they are eligible.

17.  Why is the County involved in this project and do I have to go through the County? 
Property Owners do not have to go through the County (except normal building permitting) to construct a seawall or dune on their property.  Any participation with the County is 100% voluntary. The County’s purpose of participating is for many reasons, but the following is some of the main reasons:

  • Uniformity of Sea Wall- Avoid many different varieties and appearances
  • Economies of Scale – May be able to getter price by bundling the projects
  • Assistance to residents in need with threatened property - Right thing to do to protect citizens
  • Coordination with State Agencies – A governmental entity can lobby for its constituents
  • Contracting/Construction Expertise - Some owners are inexperienced
  • Government Plus – As a local government permitting agencies know they can hold us accountable.
  • Financing - We can spread out costs over the life span of the improvement.
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Current Seawall Documentation 3 documents
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March 8, 2017 - Seawall Presentation/Artwork/Docs 8 documents
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