(MUR) Murphy

Location: Potomac River, Westmoreland County, Virginia

Site Parameters
  • Coast Type: Straight
  • Body of Water: Potomac River
  • Shore Direction of Face: NE
  • Shore Type: High Bank
  • Average Shore Height: 15 feet
  • Average Fetch: 6 nautical mile
  • Distance to 6ft Contour: 1013 feet
  • Date Installed: September 1997
  • Type: Headland Control
  • Number of Breakwaters: 3
  • Number of Bays: 2

Land Use: Agriculture
Ownership: Private
Problem: Chronic erosion of 15 ft upland bank
Purpose: Long-term shore erosion control

This site is a working farm that has a long fetch to southeast of over 20 miles. Funding restraints and positive results of VIMS' study of the Hog Island Headland and Summerille sites led to the installation of a 1,700 ft headland control system in 1995. Three widely spaced headland breakwaters were constructed and one large spur/breakwater upriver was used to set the embayment. The headland control method consists of breakwaters that are placed close to shore to insure long-term connection and the adjacent upland banks are allowed to erode to equilibrium. The project was designed utilizing shore morphology evolution.

View this location on the Breakwaters Map

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