FT. LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – More barriers have been brought in to help protect a section of State Road A1A in Ft. Lauderdale from crashing surf and a higher than normal high tide.
After weeks of rough surf and beach erosion, the seawall and sidewalk along A1A from NE 14th Court to NE 17th Court have been heavily damaged or destroyed.
On Tuesday, more barriers were added and the four lane road was reduced to just two lanes. Some people who live in the area said they weren’t thrilled about the reduction of lanes for the foreseeable future.
“There’s a lot of traffic and I have to make sure I leave a lot earlier than normal to get past here,” said Alyse Siegel Chin.
Others said it’s not so bad since it’s north of the high traffic tourist area.
“It will slow people down, it’s crazy on this road, so, it’s the beach, they should go slow, it’s fine,” said Judy Altman.
On Wednesday, workers braced for some of the highest high tides of the month, but the new barriers did their job and kept the waves from lapping onto the road.
“It seems to be getting better instead of worse,” said city spokesman Matt Little.
Eighteen more truckloads of barriers were scheduled to be brought in to bulk up the make shift seawall before Wednesday night’s full moon high tide at around 8:30 p.m.
“It’s a temporary emergency measure to save the road for the time being,” said Barbara Kelleher with the state’s Department of Transportation.
City officials have formed a beach task force which will decide what permanent measures should be taken to revitalize the beach north of Sunrise Boulevard where sidewalks, seawalls and part of A1A have washed away.
“It’s very concerning,” said Andrew Hillier who lives near the beach, “I’ve been down here for 15 years and to see the beach, just being washed away, is scary.”
“It’s very frightening that Mother Nature can be so strong and that we can’t do anything to protect ourselves,” said Altman.
City officials want to remind tourist and residents alike that while the damage stretches several hundreds yards along the coastline, there is still five miles of beach that remains healthy and vibrant.
“This is not a reason to not come to the beach,” said resident Harry Preston. “The beach beautiful, the water is beautiful and it’s a long beach.”
City officials said they hope to have a renourishment project underway by late next year.
Residents who want to keep up to date on the situation can go to a special web page set up by the city.