Subaqueous and Subaerial Beach Changes after Implementation of a Mega Nourishment in Front of a Sea Dike

Anna Kroon*, Matthieu de Schipper, Sierd de Vries, Stefan Aarninkhof

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)
47 Downloads (Pure)


Sandy nourishments can provide additional sediment to the coastal system to maintain its recreational or safety function under rising sea levels. These nourishments can be implemented at sandy beach systems, but can also be used to reinforce gray coastal infrastructure (e.g., dams, dikes, seawalls). The Hondsbossche Dunes project is a combined shoreface, beach, and dune nourishment of 35 million m3 sand. The nourishment was built to replace the flood protection function of an old sea-dike while creating additional space for nature and recreation. This paper presents the evolution of this newly created sandy beach system in the first 5 years after implementation based on bathymetric and topographic surveys, acquired every three to six months. A significant coastline curvature is created by the nourishment leading to erosion in the central 7 km bordered by zones with accretion. However, over the five-year period, net volume losses from the project area were less than 5% of the initial nourished sand volume. The man-made cross-shore beach profile rapidly mimics the characteristics of adjacent beaches. The slope of the surfzone is adjusted within two winters to a similar slope. The initially wide beaches (i.e., up to 225 m) are reduced to about 100 m-wide. Simultaneously, the dune volume has increased and the dune foot migrated seaward at the entire nourished site, regardless of whether the subaqueous profile gained or lost sediment. Our results show that the Hondsbossche Dunes nourishment, built with a natural slope and wide beach, created a positive sediment balance in the dune for a prolonged period after placement. As such, natural forces in the years after implementation provided a significant contribution to the growth in dune volume and related safety against flooding.
Original languageEnglish
Article number1152
Pages (from-to)1-25
Number of pages25
JournalJournal of Marine Science and Engineering
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2022


  • nourishments
  • building with nature
  • coastline evolution
  • dune growth
  • Hondsbossche Dunes
  • coastal morphology


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