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Coastal management planning for Frenchman Bay continues as draft CHRMAP published for public comment

Stuart McGuckinAlbany Advertiser
A draft report assessing coastal risk at Frenchman Bay is available for public comment on the City of Albany website.
Camera IconA draft report assessing coastal risk at Frenchman Bay is available for public comment on the City of Albany website. Credit: Stuart McGuckin

A draft report identifying key assets at Frenchman Bay at high risk of coastal erosion by 2041 has been put out for public comment by the City of Albany.

The 41-page Frenchman Bay Public Infrastructure Coastal Hazard Risk Management & Adaptation Plan is a detailed analysis of long-term coastal risk to help guide future planning.

A table identifying the level of vulnerability faced by the bay’s gravel access road, lower gravel parking, boat access point, boat access stairs and lower bitumen parking shows the assets face a high risk of impact by 2041.

The same six assets are presently identified as medium risk, along with the eastern picnic area and eastern barbecues, tables and associated structures.

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Nine other assets are identified as presently facing low risk.

“The results of the vulnerability assessment show that the key assets will likely require management within the short term,” the report states.

“Most assets are identified as having either a high or medium vulnerability to coastal erosion hazards within 20 years and are assessed as having a medium to low level of vulnerability in the present day.”

After identifying several possible management actions and risk mitigation strategies, the report concludes the shoreline fronting the site could be “vulnerable to change caused by a combination of severe storm erosion and sea level rise”.

A shoreline movement plan indicates that there has been little movement of the Frenchman Bay shoreline over the past 50 years.
Camera IconA shoreline movement plan indicates that there has been little movement of the Frenchman Bay shoreline over the past 50 years. Credit: MP Rogers & Associates PL

“In this regard, it is prudent to consider the potential future shoreline changes and the possible impacts on the public assets from future coastal adaptation and management requirements,” the report states.

“It is noted however that an assessment of the historical movement of the shoreline fronting the site shows that the beach has experienced very little gross movement over the last half a century with the exception of the erosion adjacent to, and likely caused by, the redundant historical seawall.

“This demonstrates the apparent stability of the shoreline and highlights that the results of the coastal hazard assessment are likely to be conservative for this location.”

The draft Frenchman Bay CHRMAP is available on the City’s website and the public comment will remain open until March 1.

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