Dredge Project

The Beneficial Use of Dredge Material (BUDM) project will restore and protect the quality and function of the beaches and dunes of South Padre Island and adjacent areas by adding sand to the system and widening the beaches. The desired outcome of this project is to place a large amount of beach-quality sand onto the beaches and dunes of South Padre Island in an effort to widen the beaches, and strengthen and stabilize the dunes. By widening the beaches it creates more habitat for wildlife, such as nesting habitat for the endangered Kemps Ridley sea turtle and foraging habitat for the threatened Piping Plover. The project also helps protect the beach from future erosion.
The BUDM project takes about six months to plan and implement. As this is a project that uses borrowed material from the maintenance of the Brownsville Ship Channel, the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) pays for the maintenance of the channel. The City of South Padre Island is a partner to the State of Texas General Land Office who partners with the federal government. The State and the City pay the incremental cost to place the material on South Padre Island beaches. The importance of maintaining the depth of channel is to ensure the economic benefits of the Port of Brownsville stay in the Rio Grande Valley.
The timing of BUDM projects are limited, they can only be done outside turtle nesting season which is October through March. The schedule of the project is not dictated by the City or State as this is a Federal project overseen by the USACE. The City understands this is a frustrating event but it is necessary to ensure that beaches are renourished on a continuous basis as we mitigate the ongoing erosion occurring at the northern City limits.