Beach design and land reclamations

Around the world, an increased demand and pressure is exerted on our coastlines. Coastal urbanisation increases the demand for beaches and reclamations, while processes such as climate change and sea level rise pose increased pressure on these developments. Furthermore, we see an increasing demand for sustainable solutions. Deltares understands the added value of designs that are both functional and sustainable and at the same time well-integrated in the natural environment. We therefore support our clients in meeting their project requirements for today, but also in the challenges of the future. To deal with these future challenges state-of-the-art knowledge development is required to optimize the use of existing and new coastal infrastructure and beach developments in the best possible way.

Deltares has an extensive track record in beach development projects. Our expertise is integrated in our advice on the design and protection of beach developments such as:

  • Coastal schemes (e.g. South Korea, Angola, USA, Qatar)
  • Land reclamations such as Hong Kong Airport & the Dubai Palm Islands
  • Adaptive nourishment strategies related to climate change and sea level rise
  • Integrated ‘Building with Nature’ (BwN) solutions meeting different societal needs, such as the Sand motor

The Sumaysimah beach development project in Qatar: A functional and sustainable beach design tailored for the physical and natural environment.

Deltares has a broad range of in-house expertise related to water, subsoil and infrastructure, and is able to create multi-disciplinary project teams based on the technical challenges that are part of a beach development project, allowing us to support our clients in such multi-disciplinary projects in a highly effective and tailored manner.

Our expertise combined with sound understanding of relevant physical processes in the natural environment and in-house state-of-the-art process-based numerical models, allows us to provide expert and tailored advice. We understand and support client demands during all phases of a beach development project, ranging from rapid assessments, interactive design sessions to detailed impact predictions. The advice we provide to our clients also extents to the assessment and quantification of environmental impact for both hard and soft coastal interventions.

We always further improve and extend our knowledge and models to guarantee state-of-the-art specialist advice to our clients for both the challenges of today and tomorrow. In particular, we focus our research on:

  • Improved system understanding using both local and global data such as remotely sensed satellite imagery, increasing relevant system understanding even in data-scarce environments
  • Increasing model prediction accuracy through improvement of our numerical models (e.g. including aeolian transport) and model coupling (interaction of models, physical process and multi-scales)
  • Understanding and quantifying uncertainty ranges by adopting probabilistic techniques into complex numerical modelling studies, providing the ability for risk-informed decision-making to our clients
  • Integrated solutions to fulfil multiple societal needs in term of flood risk reduction, economic activities, recreation and nature conservation by increasing knowledge over multi-disciplinary interaction aspects
  • Interactive visualization and modelling techniques to improve dialog and interactivity with clients and their stakeholders, in all different phases of a project

Automated coastline development tool based on open-source satellite imagery. Example of the sand motor, a pioneering artificial peninsula at the Dutch coast designed as a long-term dynamic coastline protection measure that meets its functional requirements, is well integrated in the natural environment and adds to local recreational and ecological developments.