Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Fremantle finds end of sand ‘rainbow’

City of Fremantle Council’s ground-breaking Port Beach sand nourishment project is now complete.

In the latest and final stage of works, 150,000m³ of sand was dredged from Fremantle Port’s deep water channel during February and March and used to extend the beach. 

The Port Beach sand nourishment project is the first time ‘rainbowing’ – a visually spectacular technique which involves the pumping of a mixture of dredged sand and water into a high arc through the air and onto the nearshore area – has been employed in Western Australia.

The project was a collaboration between Council, Fremantle Ports and WA’s Department of Transport.

Works were completed in two stages, with an initial 92,400m³ of sand placed between July and October 2022.

Fremantle Mayor, Hannah Fitzhardinge said the works were planned to provide protection against erosion for around 10 years – although this will depend on the weather patterns.

“This project has made a significant and visible difference to the beach, imagine filling a hole 150 metres long, 100 metres wide and 10 metres deep – that’s a lot of sand!” she said.

“The real test comes when we head into the winter months and brace for those strong storm fronts. We’ll be watching closely to monitor the effects of these works.

“We’ve still got work to do as we move towards the next step of this project, to undertake dune reestablishment and revegetation along Sandtrax, which we anticipate will be completed this autumn and winter.”

Port Beach Polar Bears president, Suzette Felton said she was delighted Port Beach had been restored to some of its former glory.

“Some of our members have been coming here for over 60 years when there was only a track to the beach. We have over 200 members ranging from 24 to 96 years old and Port beach is our home,” she said.

“We pride ourselves on what we have achieved and what our club means to so many people in our community. Without our beach, this would indeed be difficult to maintain.”

Fremantle Ports Manager Government and Public Relations Neil Stanbury said it was great that the project finished in time for the school holidays.

“As well as making the beach more enjoyable for users, the sand renourishment has operational advantages for us and our customers through maintenance of the shipping channel’s depth and ensuring a buffer for Port Beach Road access to Rous Head,” he said.

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