About this Project

LKB has been retained by the Town of Islip to design, obtain permits for and oversee installation of an Oyster Castle Erosion Protection System at Islip Beach, a family town beach and park. This South Shore beach has been devastated by storms and climate change, having lost approximately 100 feet of beach over the past 25 years. The Oyster Castle artificial reef will serve as an environmental-friendly alternative to the bulkhead that previously protected the beach. It  will not interfere with the public’s use of the beach, can be implemented by Town forces and volunteers, will be aesthetically pleasing, and ultimately serve to safeguard the beach from erosion.

An Oyster Castle is a system of inter-locking stacked blocks made from a blend of concrete and oyster shells, serving as a surface for juvenile oysters to attach and grow. Over time, the oysters will multiply and the growth of spat and barnacles will form, creating the look of a natural reef and providing a habitat for an ecosystem. Additionally, the oysters will function as a natural seawater filter and improve the quality of the bay water, which is currently overloaded with nutrients. “Just one oyster can filter more than 50 gallons of water in a single day.” (ChesapeakeBay.net)

Oyster Castles work well for shoreline restoration because they can be configured to meet the needs of all shorelines, and overtime can be extended in length and perfect height to reduce wave energy and provide protection. Currently, LKB’s Environmental Engineering Department is working on the design of the Oyster Castle and permit applications for this system. LKB staff has surveyed the eastern portion of Islip Beach to determine the topography of the beach, as well as a bathymetric survey (measurement of the depth of water), which extended 100 feet from shoreline. The results will be combined with high and low tide information to assist with the design.

As always, our Environmental Engineering Department works to restore the quality of the natural environment that sustains us.

Location

Islip, NY

Client

Town of Islip

Completion

Ongoing

 

Project Description and Details Authored by: John Gerlach, Director of Environmental Sciences

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