Hurricane Irene leaves lasting damage to Folly Beach (Update: Closed until 2013?)

Image by Flickr user Geoff LMV

Update: A plan to add sand back to the beach and add groins has been proposed.

Update February 15: A brief update to note a report from ABC News 4 about there being little progress and any hope of repairing the park appears set for 2013.

Update January 29: Four months on and the situation at Folly Beach County Park hasn't improved.

The multi-million dollar project to nourish the beach's sand levels remains unfunded and the park closed — however there's some hope that $5.5 million for a temporary fix could be secured.

I'll point you to The Post and Courier's report; take a read here

— Update by Ken Hawkins.

First reporting: Although the path of Hurricane Irene pulled far enough east to spare most of South Carolina, the waves created from her forceful winds took quite a toll on the dunes and beaches along the Lowcountry coast.

Folly Beach's landscape of towering, healthy dunes and ample beach areas have been washed away. Boardwalks which once cut through the dunes now stand over hollow, expansive drops. The Washout, a popular section on the Island's north end which draws Charleston's surfers and younger crowd is in shambles. Even during low tide at The Washout, there is no beach to be found as the waves continually crash against the rocks. Folly Beach County Park was hit hard and will remain closed until at least early 2012.

In hopes of getting the Army Corps of Engineers to come in and nourish the beaches, Folly Beach Mayor Tim Goodwin took state and federal officials by the badly damaged areas. The effort, according to Goodwin, will cost an estimated $18 million, 85 percent of which will be handled by the federal government. However, that won't be until 2013.

The Post and Courier has an in-depth report on the sad state of Folly's coastline; read it here.

Get more related news about Irene's effects over here.

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