Beach Nourishment Easements
Beach nourishment has proven effective at stemming erosion on the Outer Banks. All of the northern beach towns, as well as Buxton and Mirlo Beach on Hatteras Island, have begun using nourishment to successfully manage and maintain their shorelines. Prior to nourishment, these areas experienced frequent ocean overwash, even during small nor’easters. The resulting damage, including the loss of homes, businesses, and infrastructure such as waterlines and streets, significantly impacted the area’s economy and quality of life.
If your oceanfront property lies south of 8827 South Old Oregon Inlet Road or between 2919 South Virginia Dare Trail and 5317 South Virginia Dare Trail, your ten-year beach nourishment easement expired April 1, 2021. Therefore, we need your help to continue Nags Head’s shoreline management efforts into the future. (Properties from 8827 South Old Oregon Inlet Road through 5317 South Virginia Dare Trail have perpetual easements that were obtained by Dare County and transferred to the Town of Nags Head prior to the Town's initial beach nourishment project in 2011.)
Our initial large-scale beach nourishment project in 2011 was the first on the Outer Banks. At the time, there was a great need for nourishment but some public skepticism about whether the project would be effective, so the Town only requested and obtained a ten-year easement on your property. That initial easement allowed the Town to undertake the nourishment project and other limited-duration activities including planting beach grass and installing sand fencing, as well as the more recent maintenance project completed this summer. But the easement that enabled these first two projects expires April 1, 2021. Now that beach nourishment is a part of life on the Outer Banks, we ask that you sign the enclosed perpetual easement to continue the same type of work that has been occurring. This easement will enable the Town to move more quickly to protect your property in the future when needed.
Like the initial easement, the requested perpetual easement will only apply to the oceanfront part of your property that is adjacent to the state-owned ocean beach and already subject to public trust rights under North Carolina law.
Each owner of your property must sign an easement in front of a notary public (typically notaries public are available at municipal, city, or county offices, including Nags Head’s town hall). We’ve enclosed one blank easement agreement for you to complete and one self-addressed, stamped envelope. Should you need additional easements, contact us at 252-441-5508 or download a copy and notary instructions. Note that easements MUST NOT be printed on both sides of the page.
Thank you for helping to secure the future of our community. The beach is the main revenue driver in Dare County’s tourism industry, generating nearly $109 million in state and local tax revenue and providing $2,920.61 in annual average tax relief per Dare County resident (source: Dare County Tourism Board).
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Public Information Officer Roberta Thuman at 252-441-5508 or at Roberta.Thuman@nagsheadnc.gov.