Continuing coastal erosion across the world is leading to the development and installation of innovative techniques for the effective and unobtrusive shoreline and near shore control. This paper looks at a variety of coastal structures built utilising only sand filled goesynthetics over the last fifteen years.


The use of sand filled geotextile units as permanent construction elements in coastal works as a replacement of rock or concrete armour units elements is already more than 50 years old. With the increasing cost of the "conventional" construction materials and environmental awareness of coastal engineering activities, the use of sand filled geocontainers and tubes especially made of nonwoven staple fibre geotextiles has increased. Sand filled geocontainers and tubes forming "Soft Rock Structures" have proven to have significant environmental advantages over conventional "hard" rock, so that they have also been used in areas where rock is readily available at a reasonable cost.

Groyne – North Kirra, Gold Coast, Australia

This project pioneered the use of multiple, large diameter tubes in Australia. The structure was designed as a temporary structure for a design life of 5 years as an erosion protection groyne. Despite some initial damage by vandalism, this structure is now over fifteen years old and has been covered by sand nourishment. As a result, a number of other structures in a variety of configurations were constructed in the Gold Coast and other areas.

Groyne – Maroochy River, Sunshine Coast, Australia

In 1994, two major groynes were constructed in the Maroochy River on the Sunshine Coast following extensive model testing and studies by the Coastal Management Branch of the Department of Primay Industries. The Maroochy Shire Council constructed these groynes to protect the badly eroding northern shore of the popular Cotton Tree recreational holiday caravan park.

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