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Coastal Engineering Reconnaissance Study for Barren Island, MD

This feasibility study provided background and coastal engineering design guidance for the Barren Island site, in eastern Chesapeake Bay, investigated as a beneficial use dredged material project. The study addressed two major needs of the project, 1) identification and evaluation of available data that can be used to describe environmental (meteorological and hydrological) conditions at the Barren Island site, and 2) design parameters (i.e., stone size and dike elevation) of the two proposed dike alignments based on the environmental conditions. Material dredged from a navigation channel will be used to create new wetlands resource areas attached to Barren Island. A coastal dike is required to protect the dredged material as it consolidates over the course of several months. Two different sized dike alignments were considered as options for the project. Using historical wind data from Baltimore-Washington International Airport, estimates of wave heights approaching from eight compass sectors were determined. The design crest height of the dike depends greatly upon the hydrodynamic and wave climate of the area, as well as the chosen rate of allowable overtopping. A run-up analysis was performed and the necessary dike crest height was determined from this analysis. Armor stones sizes for the Barren Island dike were determined using maximum wave heights in the surf zone computed for each dike alignment.

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