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Mashpee DPW Adds Sand, Fights Erosion On South Cape Beach

Posted on January 3, 2023

The Mashpee Department of Public Works began adding 2,000 tons of sand to the dune on South Cape Beach yesterday, Thursday, December 29. The restoration efforts are addressing erosion from the storm that hit the Upper Cape late last week.

The parking lot at South Cape Beach used to be level with the beach, DPW Director Catherine E. Laurent told the Enterprise, and portions of the pavement were lost to storm damage. The town permitted and constructed an artificial dune to protect the parking lot, she said. As part of the permitting and to maintain the dune, the DPW adds sand to the dune before and after storms.

Storms in the fall washed a little bit of sand away from the dune, Ms. Laurent said. Roughly 400 tons of sand were added to the beach’s artificial dune earlier this month, but a significant amount of the dune was lost due to last week’s storm, she said. The earlier application began on December 6 and the restoration efforts may extend into next week, she explained in an email.

Sand is delivered in tractor trailers, Ms. Laurent said, and then loaded into a machine that spreads it along the length of the dune, which is roughly 500 feet long.

Mashpee’s contract for sand is with Cape Cod Aggregates Corp., Ms. Laurent said. She explained that the amount of sand bought varies from year to year, but it is a line item in the DPW’s budget.

In Fiscal Year 2022, the DPW spent roughly $71,000 on sand, she said; however, the year before, the department spent only around $16,000. The amount of money spent varies depending on storms, Ms. Laurent explained.


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