The state Lands Commission is considering a proposal by a group of wealthy property owners in western Malibu to rebuild an eroded beach, and one of the sources for the 600,000 cubic yards of sand could be the ocean floor off Manhattan Beach.
A group of 124 Malibu homeowners along severely eroded Broad Beach formed an assessment district to tax themselves to pay for the project, which has been estimated to cost about $20 million, the Daily Breeze reported. The resulting beach would be publicly-owned and accessible through two existing public sidewalks and from Zuma Beach.
The plan calls for pumping silty, fine-grain sand ashore from a mudbank just off Broad Beach. This fine sand would be used to restore sand dunes, as wildlife habitat, and would be placed over an existing, emergency rock wall that was rushed into place several years ago to protect houses.
But the assessment district is also looking for a coarser sand to rebuild the beach itself, and is looking at undersea deposits off Manhattan Beach, Dockweiler Beach, and at Ventura Harbor.
The Manhattan Beach City Council registered its disapproval in a letter to the commission, expressing worry about erosion.
About 500,000 cubic yards of sand would be scooped from a 27-acre, L-shape plot about a half-mile off Manhattan Beach, according to an initial analysis, which considered six sites off Manhattan Beach.
Attorney Ken Ehrlich, speaking for Broad Beach homeowners, said the Manhattan Beach site was among "a whole host" of spots under consideration.
The State Lands Commission held a public hearing in Malibu Thursday, and has been reviewing potential impacts. Its analysis is posted at bitly.com/Z02SMF.
Written comments must be received by the commission by Friday to be considered at a Dec. 5 meeting in Sacramento, when the issue is expected to come up for discussion.
Comments can be submitted by email -- put "Broad Beach Restoration Project Comments" in the subject line -- to Jason.Ramos@slc.ca.gov or by U.S. mail to: Jason Ramos, environmental scientist, California State Lands Commission, 100 Howe Ave., Suite 100-South, Sacramento, 95825.