Slide presentation beaches and hurricanes: 1995 in the Eastern Caribbean Islands

Slide 50: Diagram of adequate coastal development setbacks

Another way to protect coastal property and beaches is to ensure that buildings are positioned a safe distance behind the active beach zone.  Each island has its own guidelines for beachfront development, so it is necessary to consult local planning authorities.  Existing building setbacks should be regarded as minimum values. This diagram shows that with an adequate setback (or buffer zone), although the beach will be eroded during a storm, it will recover naturally after the storm.  So the buildings are safe and the beach is conserved.

Slide 51: Diagram of inadequate coastal development setbacks

However, where there is an insufficient buffer zone, both the buildings and the beach are endangered.