SARASOTA (WWSB) - The City of Sarasota is nearly half way done with it’s Lido Beach renourishment project and beach goers are starting to see the difference.
A dramatic before and after picture marks the City’s progress from November to January.
“We had basically 10 feet of beach left on our property and it was miserable for the guests and us, as hoteliers,” explained David Marinich, manager of the Gulf Beach Motel Resort.
The renourishment project has been a sigh of relief for Marinich, who said this is much more than a place for people to lay their head.
“This is about a place where they’ve come to share memories and have a good time," Marinich said. "This is Lido Beach!”
The Lido Beach as they know it is returning.
“The water was right here, last week at this time and now you can see we have our beautiful beach,” Marinich showed.
The City said it’s about 40 percent done with this 90 day project to restore the critical erosion from recent storms. Crews are adding about 185,000 cubic yards of sand to the beach.
“It is looking better, I’m happy with what they’re doing,” said Gary Duncan, who’s been visiting Lido since 1983.
But not everyone agrees with him. The City even got some push back on it’s Facebook post to show the community the progress.
Some, like Laura McDowell, commented, “...can’t wait to see the next before and after pictures of millions of dollars washing away.”
But for those who own timeshares on the shore and watched as the waves invaded into their property, the $3.9 million shared by Sarasota City, County, the State of Florida and FEMA is worth every penny.
“This restoration that they’re doing to it now is helping a lot and hopefully we get more coming from Big Pass in the next couple of years, or next year, hopefully,” Duncan said.
The City of Sarasota said it is moving forward with the Army Corps of Engineers for that long term renourishment of Lido Beach.
This would regularly recycle additional sand from Big Pass over a 50 year period, as needed. That project is expected to begin in the Fall, if no legal action stops it.