Tokeneke Club seeks permit to nourish, grade beach in Darien

Photo courtesy Tokeneke Club website. http://tokenekeclub.clubhouseonline-e3.com/

The Tokeneke Club at 4 Butlers Island Road  is seeking a permit from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, New England District to conduct work in waters of the U.S. in conjunction with nourishing and grading a beach in Darien. This work is proposed in Long Island Sound at 4 Butlers Island Road in Darien.

The proposed work involves the placement of fill material below the high tide line of waters of the U.S. in order to nourish and grade the beach at the Tokeneke Club. Approximately 11,660 cubic yards of sand will be placed on an 84,900-square-foot area of the beach above and below the high tide line. This includes a 57,660-square-foot area below the high tide line of which 6,520 square feet is subtidal. Sand will be delivered to the site via barge or truck. Barged sand would be pumped into the project area and regraded using a front end loader and bulldozer.

The beach profile will be regraded such that the beach berm will be raised to an elevation of 8.4 feet NAVD and extend waterward approximately 20 feet and then transition into the face of the beach where the grade will hold a slope of 1V:1.2H until the nourishment intersects with the existing grade at an elevation of -4± feet NAVD. In the event that additional material is required to maintain the beaches, the Tokeneke Club is requesting a 10-year permit which would allow the proponent to nourish the beaches as needed in order to maintain the beach profile.

The purpose of this project is to protect the upland structures from storm damage by breaking waves offshore and preventing them from reaching the adjacent structures. Additionally, the proposed project also will add resiliency to the beach, which has a history of weathering and erosion from storm events. The club considered different beach profiles and chose this method based on the ability of the profile to withstand storms with a recurrence interval corresponding to the 5% chance annual occurrence (“20-year”) storm without significant erosion.

To further increase the resiliency of the beach during significant storm events, the sand deposited on the beach will have a median grain size of 0.5 mm, which is larger than the existing sand grain size of the beach, 0.34 mm. In order to sustain recreational activity at the site, the larger grain sand will be topped with six inches of sand with a median grain size of 0.3 mm. This also will limit the need for future nourishment as the coarse grain material is expected to be maintained on site.

This project will impact approximately 1.32 acres of Essential Fish Habitat (EFH). This habitat consists primarily of sand and silt with a small amount of cobble adjacent to the existing stone jetty structures. The mixed cobble area is estimated to be 7,900 square feet of which approximately 3,300 square feet is subtidal. Loss of this habitat may adversely affect species that use these waters and substrate. However, the Corps has made a preliminary determination that the site-specific adverse effect will not be substantial. Further consultation with the National Marine Fisheries Service regarding EFH conservation recommendations is being conducted and will be finished before the final permit decision.

The application for the federal permit was filed with the Corps in compliance with Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act, which provides for federal regulation of any work in, or affecting navigable waters of the U.S.; and Section 404 of the Clean Water Act, which regulates the discharge or fill of material in U.S. waters, including wetlands. The public notice, with more specifics on the work proposed by the Tokeneke Club, Inc., can be viewed on the Corps website at www.nae.usace.army.mil/Missions/Regulatory/PublicNotices.aspx.Public comments on this work proposed by the Tokeneke Club, Inc. (file # NAE-2018-00240) should be forwarded no later than July 19, 2018 to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, New England District, Regulatory Division (ATTN: Joshua Helms), 696 Virginia Road, Concord, MA 01742-2751. Additional information is available from Permit Project Manager Joshua Helms at 978-318-8211 or toll free 800-343-4789 or 800-362-4367 (if calling from within Massachusetts) or by email to: [email protected].