Shore protection for coastal communities and property

Shore protections in shallow water are traditionally designed with rock armour. For this purpose large quantities of rock have to be imported from often distant quarries.

The main advantage of Xbloc or XblocPlus for such projects are:

  • Reduced material quantities;
  • Reduced CO2 emission;
  • Increased resilience to climate change;
  • Less maintenance needed.

As an example case study a shore protection along the East coast of the UK is shown in the figure below. The figure below compares the amount of material required for a rock (left) and an XblocPlus (right) shore protection. The structures are designe for the same wave conditions and overtopping rate. Less material in case of XblocPlus brings about a reduction in construction costs of 50% and a reduction in CO2 emission of 25%.

Shore protections with Xbloc or XblocPlus armouring also have their advantages when applied in urban areas. Heavy transport through for example congested cities can be minimized from a safety point of view. When using a rock armoured protection large rocks, which take up a lot of volume in a truck, would have to be tranported through the city. By using Xbloc or XblocPlus armouring the total amount of required materials can be largely reduced. The slopes of these types of armour can be relatively steep which reduces the amount of filter, core and armour material.

The Cinta Costera Boulevard of Panama City has been protected by an Xbloc shore protection. In this project the existing boulevard, named Avenida Balboa, has been extended seawards. In addition to the shore protection a new boulevard has been developed. The total length of the shore protection is 3km. For the armour layer 25,000 Xblocs with a size of 0.75 m3 and 1.8ton each have been applied. 

In Bar Beach in Nigeria, the protections consists of 1.5 m3 Xblocs. The aim of this project was to protect the coastal community against the threat of a long lasting erosion problem of over 50 years which led to the regression of hundreds of meters of coastline.