Proposed Projects

Village-Funded Beach Nourishment Project – The Village is making plans to complete a Village-funded beach nourishment project in 2025. Historically, the Village has used Jay Bird Shoals as a borrow site for beach-quality sand.  This borrow site has a limited quantity of sand so the Village has been working with its environmental consultant (Land Management Group) & Engineer (Olsen Associates, Inc.) to obtain permits to use Frying Pan Shoals as a borrow site.  The permits for Frying Pan Shoals are not guaranteed and will take an extended period of time to obtain since permitting agencies seem to be waiting on a 4-year study on Frying Pan Shoals that is being conducted by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) and UNCW prior to issuing any permits.  Accordingly, the Village is seeking to expand its borrow area at Jay Bird Shoals for the Village’s next project.   A report on this effort can be found HERE. More information about the 2025 Project can be found HERE.

Wilmington Harbor Sand Management Plan (WHSMP) – Historically, the Village of Bald Head Island, Caswell Beach, and Oak Island have received sand dredged from the navigation channel per the WHSMP. The last maintenance relative to this plan, in which Bald Head Island was the recipient of sand was winter 2022/2023. View the WHSMP HERE (Appendix A).

Wilmington Harbor Navigation Improvement Project – The N.C. State Ports Authority is paying for and planning for a project to deepen the Cape Fear River shipping channel by about five feet to an average depth of at least 47 feet.  The Ports Authority indicated that the existing channel conditions cannot accommodate newer, larger container ships (the ships being built today are three times larger).  

The Village of Bald Head Island submitted comments regarding the proposed project in October 2019 and June 2023. 

In June 2024 the Village Manager reported that Village staff, a representative from our coastal engineering firm, and counsel attended the virtual meetings and open house that the USACE conducted on the Harbor Deepening Project earlier that month. The Village’s government affairs consultant (Mike McIntyre of Ward & Smith, P.A.) also keeps abreast of this project. Village staff and representatives are working on a letter to be submitted by the comment period deadline (July 22, 2024). The Village will likely recap some of the points made in the 2023 letter and will continue to attend meetings and remain engaged. The Village is concerned that this project will cause significant erosion along the shoreline in South Beach much like what was experienced as a result of the most recent channel dredging and realignment. 

USACE Webpage on the Harbor Deepening Project