Brunswick Town/Fort Anderson (BTFA) is a North Carolina state historic site located on the west bank of the lower Cape Fear River in Brunswick County. The area has a historical interest related to colonial life in North Carolina as well as a Confederate Civil War fortification.
Following the deepening of the Cape Fear River navigation channel in 2008, the NC Department of Natural and Cultural Resources (DNCR) identified the accelerated erosion of the site’s valuable natural resources, Spartina alterniflora marsh platforms, which exist along the site’s shoreline. The combined impacts from constant tidal forces and dynamic wave action created by shipping traffic displacement waves have resulted in the loss of 75-120 feet in tidal marsh since 2008. Adverse shoreline erosion now threatens to destroy formerly buried colonial-era wharfs and permanently erode the earthwork batteries of Fort Anderson civil War Fortification.
The DNCR implemented a phased approach to the shoreline stabilization project. Phase 1 implemented 220’ of the Reefmaker Ecosystem System and an additional 200 feet of rip rap slope protection to protect Fort Anderson. Following severe erosion caused by Hurricane Matthew in 2016, the protection of the Fort’s northern earthen battery was deemed the most vulnerable area of the historic site. Phase 1 construction began in July 2017, and it was completed in August 2017.
The Phase 1 Reefmaker structure was initially installed using 10 ecodisks, set to a structure height of 2’ above mean highest high tide. Following Hurricane Matthew’s performance, it was determined by the engineer that 4 ecodisks could be removed and re-purposed under Phase 2 of the project. Therefore, in the corresponding pictures, the structure height of the Phase 1 structure is substantially greater than ordinary high tide.