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Restoration efforts will shore up Wicomico beaches


Posted on August 31, 2022

Two popular waterfront recreation areas in Wicomico County are undergoing restoration work to keep their shorelines from washing away in the next big storm.

Work has already started at Cove Road Beach in Bivalve where a breakwater is under construction and planting will be added to prevent further erosion, said Steve Miller, Director of Wicomico County Recreation, Parks & Tourism.

“Sometimes at high tide, there’s no beach there at all,” he said.

The county has had shoreline restoration plans in the works for at least three or four years, Miller said.

So far, the contractor has moved in several hundred tons of rock for the two breakwaters at the park, and more stone was on the way, said Chuck Rousseau, the department’s deputy director.

The 1.6-acre park is about 15 miles from Salisbury on the Nanticoke River. The beach area is long and narrow with tall beach grass separating it from the parking lot and shaded picnic tables.

The park is closed temporarily while the work there is underway. For safety reasons, the public will not be permitted there during the closure.

As long as the weather doesn’t interfere with the work, Cove Road Beach should reopen in two to three weeks, Rousseau said.

Once the work is completed at Cove Road Beach, a similar project will start at Roaring Point which had damage from Hurricane Sandy. The work there will include four breakwaters and plantings to prevent further erosion.

“Future storms could wipe out public access from the parking lot,” Miller said.

Sand also will be hauled to both parks to help replenish the beaches.

Roaring Point Park is 33 acres along the Nanticoke River. It is located about 30 minutes from Salisbury via Nanticoke Road. The beach offers a view of the river as it widens to reach the Tangier Sound and Chesapeake Bay.

The park is known as a good fishing and crabbing spot by the locals. It also offers walking trails.

Although the parking lot will be closed during construction, Rousseau said part of the beach at Roaring Point near the mouth of the river will still be accessible by boat. Since it will be a larger project than the one at Cove Road, the work will likely last into November, he said.

The county is borrowing money from the state’s Shore Erosion Control Revolving Loan Fund through the Department of Natural Resources to pay for both projects.

Cove Road will cost $280,155, with a 15-year loan term. Roaring Point will cost $389,660 to be paid over 20 years. Both programs are being funded with zero interest.

“Everybody’s really hopeful it will protect these two county assets for years to come,” Rousseau said.

Updates on both projects, including reopening details, will be posted to the Wicomico Recreation & Parks website at


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