Living Shorelines Grants & Technical Assistance Program

Announcing the 2019 Living Shorelines Grant Program

Once again, The Nature Conservancy in New Jersey is offering grants and technical assistance to help communities overcome barriers to implementing living shorelines.

In September 2019, the New Jersey Chapter of the Nature Conservancy kicked off another round of its program to assist communities in developing and implementing living shorelines as a nature-based solution to the erosion of tidal shorelines, and other coastal hazards.

As an alternative to addressing shoreline erosion using rigid vertical structures such as bulkheads and seawalls, living shorelines help attenuate wave energy and reduce erosion while maintaining the natural shoreline gradient and maintaining or enhancing nearshore habitat (e.g., tidal marsh, shellfish, beach, upland forest or shrubland). This is accomplished through the strategic placement of various elements, which may include sand, native plants, rock, and pre-cast modular structures.

View and Download The Invitation for Proposals: TNC Living Shorelines Invitation for Proposals – 2019 

Learn more by attending the Informational Webinar on September 19, 2019 Register Here

To help in planning and implementing living shoreline project, TNC has just released an updated version of A Community Resource Guide for Planning Living Shorelines in New Jersey

Webinars & Workshops


September 19, 2019 Informational Webinar on the recently released Invitation for Proposals and the grant process. Register Here

October 8, 2019 – Living Shoreline Permitting Workshop: An Opportunity to Speak with the Regulatory Agencies about your living shoreline project. To see the workshop agenda, click here. To register, click here.

Please check back for newly posted webinars and workshops planned for 2020.


March 2018 – Overview of Grant Program and Living Shoreline Planning Tools (webinar)

Topics included the 2018 Invitation for Proposals application process as well as tools and resources for planning a living shoreline project. Click here to view the webinar.

July 2018 – Webinar: Developing a Conceptual Design for a Living Shoreline Project

With partners at Jacques Cousteau National Estuarine Research Reserve, TNC-NJ hosted a webinar about developing a conceptual design for a living shoreline project. Conceptual designs can be helpful early in the project to get feedback from stakeholders, obtain funding, and work with engineers to develop a final design. This webinar features presentations from Jon Miller (Stevens Institute of Technology) and Josh Moody (Partnership for the Delaware Estuary), both of whom have extensive experience with living shorelines in New Jersey. You can view a recording of the webinar here.

October 2018 – In-Person Workshop: Building With Nature: A Workshop to Explore Oyster Reef and Marsh Sill Living Shoreline Techniques

Our friends at Jacques Cousteau National Estuarine Research Reserve in Tuckerton, NJ hosted a half-day workshop to take a deeper dive on 2 living shoreline techniques: oyster reefs and marsh sills. This workshop featured lessons learned from practitioners who’ve implemented living shoreline projects on-the-ground in New Jersey. The workshop was also attended by representatives from the NJDEP who spoke about some of the regulations around doing these projects.


Project Planning Tools and Resources

The Restoration Explorer: Living Shorelines App is a high-level screening tool that can help you decide what type of living shoreline technique may be appropriate for a given stretch of shoreline.

The Stevens Institute of Technology Living Shoreline Engineering Guidelines can provide planners and engineers with guidance on technical and ecological parameters that can help with appropriate siting and design of living shoreline projects.

The updated Community Resource Guide for Planning Living Shorelines contains helpful information on project development, including budget templates for living shorelines.

The Procurement Guide for Nature-based Solutions contains sample RFP language to help communities contract and solicit expert input for implementing living shoreline projects.

A recent White Paper: Nature Based Solutions for Coastal Highway Resilience from the Federal Highway Administration contains case studies as well as a literature review on design performance of nature-based solutions, including living shorelines.



Ship Bottom—Shore Avenue Park: The Nature Conservancy provided $35,000 to the Borough of Ship Bottom on Long Beach Island to design a hybrid living shoreline, incorporating low crested rock sills and restoration of the inter-tidal marsh along a public park. The Shore Avenue Park living shoreline will be a great demonstration project for coastal communities interested in designing and building living shorelines in the Barnegat Bay estuary.

Beach Haven—Mordecai Island: The Nature Conservancy provided $20,000 to Mordecai Land Trust for construction to expand the size and scope of an existing Oyster Castle breakwater that helps protect the shoreline of Mordecai Island—a 45-acre marsh island that buffers about 1/3 of mainland Beach Haven (on Long Beach Island) from waves.

Waretown—Lighthouse Center: The Nature Conservancy provided $10,000 to the Lighthouse Center for Natural Resource Education in Waretown, for design of a hybrid living shoreline using Wave Attenuation Devices to combat accelerating erosion along the shoreline. The site, which encompasses 194 acres of maritime forest, mudflats, lagoons, fields and salt marshes, is one of the last undeveloped waterfront tracts on Barnegat Bay.

Red Bank—Private Landowner: A private landowner in Red Bank is receiving $10,000 for design of a living shoreline that would replace a deteriorating bulkhead on the Navesink River with a marsh sill breakwater, marsh, and upland vegetation. The project, sponsored by the US Fish and Wildlife Service, has the potential to be a model for other private landowners in New Jersey to consider living shorelines instead of bulkheads.

Installation of a bio-log living shore in Maurice River, NJ. Bio-logs are used to stabilize shorelines or stream banks and prevent further erosion. Once vegetation has taken over (either planted or naturally recruited) a living shoreline will be achieved.

Installation of a bio-log living shore in Maurice River, NJ. Bio-logs are used to stabilize shorelines or stream banks. Once vegetation has taken over (either planted or naturally recruited) a living shoreline will be achieved. (Photo credit: Mike Shanahan)

For any additional questions on the program please contact Bill Shadel, Coastal Projects Manager.

This program has been supported, in part, through a grant from the Climate Resilience Fund.