Widely regarded as one of Australia's 'iconic' coastal locations, Main Beach, Byron Bay is centrally located in the heart of Byron Bay’s coastal landscape. Main Beach provides the community with a place to connect with each other and the coastal environment.
At the interface between the sea and the land is a coastal protection structure (also known as the Jonson Street Protections Works or JSPW) that runs along the foreshore between the Main Beach Surf Lifesaving Club and the First Sun Holiday Park, and is next to Apex Park, playgrounds, the Memorial Pool and the beach car park.
The coastal protection structure comprises a main groyne (located next to the car park) and two smaller groynes to the north (near First Sun Holiday Park) and south (near Apex Park). The majority of the structure is made of rock of various sizes.
Like many coastal areas of NSW, Main Beach is susceptible to coastal erosion. The structure is a public asset that provides a significant role in protecting the Byron Bay town centre from coastal erosion and underlying long-term recession (movement of shoreline landward). However, the structure is degraded and not to a contemporary or conventional coastal engineering standard. It also doesn't provide suitable public amenity and aesthetics, public safety and access.
For further information on the project, download the Main Beach Shoreline Project Overview.(PDF, 3MB)
In August 2019, Council engaged Bluecoast Consulting Engineers to begin an extensive, multi-faceted investigation to determine the best solution to modify the structure.
The Main Beach Shoreline Project will investigate various modification options, with the intent to improve the current situation. The project is based on a ‘multiple lines of evidence’ approach which includes coastal modelling, geomorphological assessment of the shoreline, collection of wave data and expert observations. In addition, social, environmental and economic values will be explored and considered as part of the evidence based approach.
By using this approach, our aim is to find the best possible option for modification of the structure.
The infographic on this page provides an outline of the Main Beach coastal protection works.