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Application of geosynthetics solutions in the construction of El Salitre artificial beach – Chile

This paper briefly describes the main technical aspects related with the design and installation of the coastal protection structures and other geosynthetics engineering solutions applied in the construction of new ‘El Salitre’ artificial beach, located in the city of Tocopilla, Chile. The coastal erosion solutions consisted in the construction of three breakwaters designed to mitigate the impact of waves actions over the new beach, ensuring hydraulic stability and fulfilling strict environmental requirements. Geotextile tubes and geotextile scour aprons were used for the conformation of the two main breakwaters cores, which allowed not only the permanent confinement and use (as filling material) of a part of the contaminated sand from the original beach, but prevented its treatment or final disposal in open sea. Some of the main challenges and most important aspects of the design and construction stage of the project will be generally presented.