NASA Kennedy Space Center Sand Dunes and Coastal Shoreline Restoration

Hurricane Matthew severely damaged a 3.7-mile stretch of coastline east of Cape Road on the NASA KSC that needs to be repaired. Loss and damage of dunes occurred from the north KSC boundary at Eagle 4, just south of Playalinda Beach, to south of Launch Complex 39A at the camera site UCS #12. East of Cape Road, along the beach, are multiple spaceflight camera pads and equipment, weather stations, and an inactive railroad system. West of the road are Launch Complexes 39A and B and high-pressure gas lines, including GN2 and Helium. In one stretch along the beach, the dune system was overwashed during Hurricane Matthew and is now non-existent. The loss of dunes now jeopardizes the weather tracking and camera equipment, Cape Road, access to critical communications infrastructure along the coastline, and the Launch Complexes. Restoration of the damaged dunes and shoreline was imperative to protect critical infrastructure and to allow continued safe use of this roadway.

Jones Edmunds provided engineering design services to restore approximately 3.7 miles of KSC beaches and sand dunes on an accelerated schedule. The project encompassed field investigations for wetland delineation, demolition, and permitting with the St. Johns River Water Management District (SJRWMD) and the US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) and provided specifications, drawings, opinion of construction cost, construction schedule, and a data manual.

The project will provide protection to KSC’s launch pads, camera and weather stations, and roads from a simulated 25-year storm. The competitive, fixed-price, bid contract encompassed the complete design and construction details for sand dune construction with an estimated 400,000 cubic yards of suitable beach sand, restoration, and vegetative placement along KSC shoreline between KSC’s north boundary (Eagle Nest 4) and the UCS #12 camera pad (south of LC 39A) to stabilize the dunes. The project also included demolition design of an abandoned railroad line along the shore, relocation of a CCAFS weather station, and an extensive investigation and comparison of the feasibility of using off-center sand sources, in addition to investigation, geotechnical testing, and analysis of three potential new sand sources at KSC.

The project includes providing engineering services during construction (ESDC) to NASA and limited Title 2 inspection services to observe the sand quality and quantity the amount of material brought to the site and placed on the dunes.

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