Construction in Oak Island threatens dune structures - WECT, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Construction in Oak Island threatens dune structures

OAK ISLAND, NC (WECT) – Town leaders in Oak Island are worried about a construction project that could be threatening the health and safety of the beach. 

Construction crews are currently building four homes on West Beach Drive in Oak Island.  The developer wants to build a set of outdoor pools on the back side of the house.  But town leaders say they're getting too close to the dunes.  They're concerned about the structure of the dunes and the homeowners who live along the coast.

Councilman Jeff Winecoff didn't like what he saw.  "I rode out here and looked and the first day, there was trash all over the beach," said Winecoff. "You could see where they were driving on the dunes, walking on the dunes."

Town leaders can't do anything about it.  One town ordinance says "stay off the dunes."  But another ordinance allows developers to build on the beach as long as they rebuild the dunes and replant any vegetation.

"Our ordinance needs to be looked at," said Winecoff.  "We need to be able to tell the contractor that's not acceptable."

Winecoff plans to address his fellow council members to see what they can do to stop this from happening again.

"The most important thing is this beach," said Winecoff.  "I'm going to be a steward of this beach.  I'm going to protect this beach as long as I'm in office.  If it means changing the ordinance, that's what I'm going to do."

The Town of Oak Island inspections department reviewed the site on Wednesday and found no problems.  According to the inspections department, Silver Developers are following the guidelines of their construction permit.  A representative from the company says they plan to rebuild the dunes and replant any vegetation that is necessary.

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