Monitoring and modeling sound-side erosion near Oregon Inlet to support feasibility level transportation planning

Sound-side processes including locally-generated waves, storm surge, sea level rise, and long-term morphological changes in the southernmost flood channel of Oregon Inlet are likely the cause of 80-100 ft of marsh loss in the north end of Pea Island between January 2011 and February 2018. The long-term erosion that increases the proximity of the NC 12 highway to the Pamlico Sound, and therefore the vulnerability of the road, calls for immediate attention on the estuarine-side processes in the north end of Pea Island that can affect the maintenance and future operation of the NC 12 transportation corridor. Thus, the proposed project seeks to investigate the erosive effects of locally-generated waves and of the southernmost flood channel of Oregon Inlet parallel to the estuarine shoreline of Pea Island. The research questions to be addressed in this project are: (1) What are the ranges of flow velocities, wave, and wind conditions causing estuarine shoreline erosion near Oregon Inlet in the short- (storms) and long-term (months to years)? (2) Are there technically feasible mitigation options that could be implemented at this location that could help slow down or stop estuarine shoreline erosion? Answers to these questions will be attained via collection and analysis of field data and numerical modeling of hydrodynamics and morphology at the north end of Pea Island. Observations and model simulations will be used to define site-specific fragility curves for estuarine shoreline failure probability as a function of environmental conditions and to assess the feasibility of estuarine shoreline erosion mitigation options. The outcomes of this project will inform NCDOT on the causes, potential consequences, and mitigation alternatives for the estuarine shoreline erosion in the north of Pea Island. Furthermore, the project will result in vulnerability metrics for NC 12 from the sound-side and computational tools, which can be applied for strategic planning for the coastal highway and future associated NC 12 projects as defined in the Bonner Bridge replacement project that includes the NC 12 Transportation Management Plan. Lessons to be learned on marsh erosion along the estuarine shoreline due to inlet changes and local hydrodynamic processes can inform and serve as basis for management decisions in other regions of interest for NCDOT and its Hydraulics and Ferry Divisions.

    Project

    • Status: Active
    • Funding: $349,103
    • Sponsor Organizations:

      North Carolina Department of Transportation

      Research and Development
      1549 Mail Service Center
      Raleigh, NC  United States  27699-1549
    • Managing Organizations:

      North Carolina Department of Transportation

      Research and Development
      1549 Mail Service Center
      Raleigh, NC  United States  27699-1549
    • Project Managers:

      Kirby, John

    • Performing Organizations:

      North Carolina State University

      Department of Civil, Construction and Environmental Engineering
      2501 Stinson Drive
      Raleigh, NC  United States  27695
    • Principal Investigators:

      Sciaudone, Elizabeth

    • Start Date: 20190801
    • Expected Completion Date: 20220731
    • Actual Completion Date: 0

    Subject/Index Terms

    Filing Info

    • Accession Number: 01716170
    • Record Type: Research project
    • Source Agency: North Carolina Department of Transportation
    • Files: RiP, STATEDOT
    • Created Date: Sep 16 2019 3:12PM