Virginia CZM Program 2009 Coastal Grant Project Description and Final Summary

Project Task:

94.03

Grantee:

Virginia Institute of Marine Science

Project Title:

Shore Evolution in Four Virginia Localities

Project Description as Proposed:

As part of a continuing, multi-year project, shore evolution has been documented in many localities in the Virginia portion of Chesapeake Bay. These data sets have been useful in a variety of ways. They have shown the rates and patterns of shore change through time at Virginia’s estuarine dunes. They have also been useful to many other research projects and advisory service activities at VIMS and other agencies. Orthorectification of historic and recent aerial photography and digitization of the shoreline show the geomorphic evolution of the coastal zone in terms of shoreline change and land use as well as nearshore variations in sandbars and shoal where present. Rural localities are more challenging to the orthorectification process than developed localities. We propose continuing this process for the counties of James City and Isle of Wight and the cities of Suffolk and Portsmouth

Federal Funding:

$50,000

Project Contact:

Scott Hardaway, 804.684.7596; hardaway@vims.edu

Project Status:

10/1/2009 - 9/30/2010: Project Completed

Final Product Received:

Shore Evolution in Four Virginia Localities Final Project Summary Oct 1, 2009 - Sept 30, 2010 (PDF)

Project Summary Provided by Grantee:

As part of a continuing, multi-year project, shore evolution has been documented for James City County, Isle of Wight, Suffolk, and Portsmouth. These reports show the rates and patterns of shore change through time for each locality.  Orthorectification of historic and recent aerial photography and digitization of the shoreline show the geomorphic evolution of the coastal zone in terms of shoreline change and landuse as well as nearshore variations in sandbars and shoal where present.  Photo dates mosaicked for James City County are 1937, 1953, 1963, 1994, 2002, 2007, and 2009. Isle of Wight photo dates are 1937, 1954, 1963, 1976, 1994, 2002, 2007, and 2009. Suffolk and Portsmouth photo dates are 1937, 1954, 1963, 1994, 2002, 2007, and 2009.

The low water shoreline was digitized on the photos. These evolution reports include all the smaller rivers and creeks for the locality. This presented challenges to the methodology in that areas where very little change is occurring or have heavy vegetative cover introduced a fair amount of uncertainty into the data. As such, in some areas, it was determined that the intervening shorelines provided no additional information and therefore were not digitized. The photos, however, are available. In addition, some areas deemed sensitive by the military were “whited-out” of early photos.
 
In as many reaches as possible, a baseline was created about 60 meters offshore with transects 10 meters apart. The Digital Shoreline Analysis Software (DSAS) program was used to determine the End Point Rate (EPR) between 1937 and 2007. These rates were plotted on maps.
 
The digital reports are available on the VIMS, Shoreline Studies Program website at http://web.vims.edu/physical/research/shoreline/Publications-Evolution.htm. Since the reports are expensive to print, only a limited number of printed reports are available. However, each locality was sent two printed reports.

Disclaimer: This project summary provides the federal dollars initially awarded to the grantee. Due to underexpenditure or reprogramming of grant funds, this figure may change. For more information on the allocation of coastal grant funds, please contact Laura McKay, Virginia Coastal Program Manager, at 804.698.4323 or email: Laura.McKay@deq.virginia.gov

A more detailed Scope of Work for this project is available. Please direct your request for a copy to Virginia.Witmer@deq.virginia.gov

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Virginia Department of
Environmental Quality
P.O. Box 1105
Richmond, VA 23218
(804) 698-4000


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