Shoreline maintenance ongoing

Published 9:11 pm Monday, March 4, 2019

Work is currently under way to stabilize and maintain three sections of shoreline on the Nansemond River, between Sleepy Hole Park and the Planter’s Club.

This shoreline bluff stabilization project’s first priority is the section of shoreline behind the Planter’s Club. According to Mike Kelly, principal planner with Suffolk Parks and Recreation, the landscaping will occur above the wetland area in all three sections of the shoreline.

“We’re not impacting the wetlands at all,” Kelly said.

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The bank of each section of shoreline will be pulled back and reshaped, with native plants and shrubs planted as well.

The Planter’s Club section, however, will be improved with a retaining wall that will reduce harmful runoff from the buildings and parking areas, and also allow for more venue space in the yard, Kelly said.

The Planter’s Club is a popular venue for weddings and other private events, with a 2,500-square-foot banquet hall, a 450-foot open deck and capacity for up to 144 people, according to

Kelly said that the bulk of the work is expected to be done by the end of March — weather permitting — and ahead of the April slate of weddings.

“It’s an important project to stabilize the bank,” he said. “It’s been eroding for many years and we’re looking forward to solving that problem at the club. In the end, it’s going to be a nicer looking venue for everybody … and it’s going to be a lot easier to maintain.”

Workers will simultaneously be stabilizing the shoreline on the backside of Sleepy Hole Golf Course adjacent to the club, which is also expected to be completed within the next 30 days, Kelly said.

After the first two sections are completed, the third and final section of stabilization will focus on the area around the 371-foot-long pier at Sleepy Hole Park. Kelly said this third section of shoreline is expected to take another 30 days to complete, depending on weather conditions.