Tanjung Benoa Beach is best known as Bali’s number-one destination for water sports. From parasailing to banana boats, from snorkeling to kitesurfing, Tanjung Benoa Beach is one of the island’s leading tourist destinations. However, like many of Bali’s southern beaches, the landscape is being eaten away by coastal erosion.
The authorities are already undertaking massive coastal abrasion works. But now, the local community is calling on business owners and the provincial government to support them in building public footpaths. They believe these will help to delineate public and private property, ensure that the conservation efforts are as effective as possible and make access as easy as possible for tourists.
Speaking to local reporters, the Head of Tanjung Benoa Customary Village, Made Wijaya, explained that a public-private partnership is a key to resolving the issue of coastal erosion on the busy beach. He explained that his party wants to see a public footpath similar to that which is being built on Kuta Beach to help keep a clear boundary between public and private property.
He said, “If this continues, then slowly, the public area might run out. With the existence of the footpath, then the problem will be finished. This of course, can put the brakes on businessmen’s intention to control public land”. He explained that there is just one 1km stretch of the coastline that could not support a footpath as the anti-abrasion infrastructure would take precedence.
A spokesperson for the PPK River and Beach II Implementing BWS Bali Water Resources Network Penida has confirmed that a footpath will be created in the final stages of the project. Gede Lanang Sunu Prabawa, said that beachside footpaths would be built in areas where they are needed. He confirmed that further planning is required, however. “The traditional village still needs time to rearrange the buildings on the beach. They propose that at some point, it will be abolished first. So that will be outside of our activities”.
Regarding the coastal abrasion project, work at Tanjung Benoa Beach is about to begin, following a few delays. After the final meetings, construction teams will have 12 months to complete the job as agreed. This includes filling and removing sand, renovations to public facilities, and the construction of revetments.
The work is part of the Bali-wide coastal projection initiative called the Beach Beach Conservation Project. The project is partially funded by the Indonesian government in partnership with the Japan International Cooperation Agency.
Phase one of the Bali-Japan partnership, titled the Bali Beach Conservation Project was completed earlier this year. Initial works focused efforts on improving conservation strategy and implementation for Sanur Beach, Nusa Dua Beach, Kuta Beach, and Tanah Lot Temple. In phase two, beach conservation efforts will be expanded to include coastal ecosystems at large.
Conservation strategies include sand nourishment, rebuilding of seawalls and structural reinforcements, and increasing the capacity of Bali’s coastal management system. The project has seen Japan loan Bali IDR 1.2 trillion (USD 824 million) for the delivery of the plans.
Prabawa confirmed that the conservation works would not impact public access to the beach. He explained, “So it doesn’t close the beach, we will arrange it according to work in the field. Of course, we do that by paying attention to work safety aspects”.
Tanjung Benoa is an area of Bali undergoing a massive redevelopment. Construction has begun at Benoa Harbour for the development of the Bali Maritime Tourism Hub. The project will create a yacht marina, yacht club, theme park, and water sports facility. Facilities will also be upgraded to allow larger cruise vessels to dock in Bali.
The mega-project is part of Bali’s bigger plan to diversify tourism opportunities on the island. Governor Wayan Koster has been vocal about his intentions to continue investing in massive infrastructural developments to help build. Sustainable future for the province.
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