Location: Point Hope, AK
> Geotechnical Investigation & Design Recommendation
> Environmental Services & Permitting
Point Hope’s peninsula is vulnerable to periodic storm surge flooding and erosion. Due to this, the community’s single-lane road to their water source was subject to frequent flooding and needed continual repair.
HDL has provided engineering services related to coastal erosion in Point Hope since 2006 and began looking for viable material sources in the region in 2007. Since then, HDL has continued to assist the community in looking for viable aggregate.
The Point Hope Coastal Erosion Mitigation project will create an inland egress, so the village maintains access to water, gravel sources, and terrestrial subsistence foods during significant flood events.
Quality aggregate for armor rock (riprap) is needed to protect existing infrastructure from erosion. Gravel sources are also vital for building roads, pads, and related civil projects. The naturally occuring aggregate surrounding the village is unsuitable for use as riprap and presents constructability issues for other civil projects. Due to Point Hope’s remote location, importing aggregate is very expensive.
In an attempt to find aggregate a reasonable distance from the village, HDL built upon existing data and our past reconnaissance to inform and refine the evaluation of potential material sources. Point Hope’s geographic location and harsh climate make drilling costly, so HDL conducted a geophysical survey using seismic refraction to evaluate four sites previously identified as potential aggregate sources.
HDL then used the geophysical survey results to provide location recommendations with the highest potential for producing a significant amount of quality aggregate. Despite facing harsh winter conditions in the remote region, HDL safely completed the drilling at the selected site 20 miles outside the village without the added expense of a helicopter.
HDL’s careful phasing of the project provided the North Slope Borough (NSB) with a cost-effective evaluation of potential material sources in Point Hope. The data and recommendations provided by HDL may result in future material source development, which would provide Point Hope and other NSB communities with a local source of quality aggregate.