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 Coastal Engineering
Design


 

 

 



John S. Ramsey, P.E., M.C.E.
Senior Coastal Engineer
and Principal


Resume (pdf) | Publications 

 

Link to Other Personnel: 

Areas of Expertise
•  Coastal processes analysis
•
  Numerical modeling of estuarine hydrodynamics and water quality
•
  Numerical modeling of marsh systems and marsh restoration design
•
  Evaluation and design of coastal structures and beach nourishment
•
  Analysis of tidal inlet dynamics and sediment transport
•
  Geotechnical engineering and analysis

 

Education                                                                                                       
1991 M.C.E. Civil (Coastal) Engineering, University of Delaware                    
1985 B.S. Civil and Environmental Engineering, Cornell University

Professional Registration
Professional Engineer (Civil), Commonwealth of Massachusetts
 

Mr. Ramsey is a Senior Coastal Engineer at Applied Coastal Research and Engineering, Inc. (Applied Coastal) and has served as Project Manager and/or Principal Investigator for estuarine water quality/flushing studies, coastal embayment restoration projects, regional shoreline management plans, beach nourishment and coastal structure designs, geotechnical engineering and groundwater flow studies, hydrodynamic and sediment transport evaluations, and environmental studies required for permitting of coastal projects.  He has authored over 60 reports, papers, and presentations in these areas of interest.

Since co-founding Applied Coastal in 1998, Mr. Ramsey has performed and provided technical oversight for projects involving coastal engineering services and numerical modeling of coastal processes. He has managed a broad range of projects including an inlet relocation project at Ellisville Harbor (Plymouth, MA), a salt pond restoration and jetty design for Oyster Pond (Falmouth, MA), analysis of wave climate to determine shore protection and wave attenuation needs for a series of ferry terminals (Bermuda), beach nourishment design and offshore sand source evaluation (Winthrop, MA), analysis and design of marsh restoration channels for a dredge disposal site (Poplar Island, MD), and several estuarine flushing/water quality studies for the Massachusetts Estuaries Project (e.g. Chatham's coastal embayments, Popponesset and Waquoit Bays in Mashpee, and Nauset Marsh in Orleans).

Since 2000, Mr. Ramsey has served as the coastal engineering consultant to the Massachusetts Coastal Zone Management (MCZM) office. In this role, he has provided coastal engineering expertise associated with shore protection structures, sediment transport, and inlet stability. In addition, Mr. Ramsey has assisted MCZM with analysis and design guidance for offshore sand mining, beach nourishment and dune design, and wave-induced flood damage assessments. Recently, he was an invited speaker at the MCZM Offshore Sand Mining Conference, where he discussed beach nourishment design for shore protection. In addition, Mr. Ramsey was invited to speak about sediment transport modeling/analyses at the 2001 Annual Meeting for the Association of Coastal Engineers in Washington, DC.

Mr. Ramsey continues to develop state-of-the-art analysis techniques focused on the quantitative understanding of estuarine and littoral processes. He has developed numerical tidal circulation models and improved existing one-, two-, and three-dimensional hydrodynamic models. Mr. Ramsey has co-authored several papers related to littoral processes analysis and has employed innovative numerical methods to develop alternative solutions for complex coastal engineering problems. He is well-versed in modern analytical and numerical techniques for evaluating coastal processes.

Since 2000, Mr. Ramsey has served as the coastal engineering consultant to the Massachusetts Coastal Zone Management (MCZM) office.  In this role, he has provided coastal engineering expertise during the regulatory review process.  In addition, Mr. Ramsey has assisted MCZM with analysis and design guidance for offshore sand mining, beach nourishment and dune design, and wave-induced flood damage assessments.  Recently, he was an invited speaker at the MCZM Offshore Sand Mining Conference, where he discussed beach nourishment design for shore protection.  In addition, Mr. Ramsey was invited to speak about sediment transport modeling/analyses at the 2001 Annual Meeting for the Association of Coastal Engineers in Washington, DC.

Mr. Ramsey worked as a coastal engineer and engineering manager at the Woods Hole Group between 1991 and 1998.  In this capacity, he worked closely with other members of the scientific/engineering staff in developing state-of-the-art analysis techniques focused on the quantitative understanding of estuarine and littoral processes.  He has developed numerical tidal circulation models and improved existing one-, two-, and three-dimensional hydrodynamic models.  Mr. Ramsey has co-authored several papers related to littoral processes analysis and has employed innovative numerical methods to develop alternative solutions for complex coastal engineering problems.   He is well-versed in modern analytical and numerical techniques for evaluating coastal processes.

Analysis of Coastal Processes and Coastal Engineering Design
Between 1998 and 2002, Mr. Ramsey evaluated a large beach erosion and rehabilitation project at Winthrop Beach in Massachusetts. This project involved numerical modeling of wave refraction and diffraction, sediment transport, and shoreline change. Results from these models were used to evaluate a series of beach management alternatives, including beach nourishment, groins, and breakwaters. Approximately 500,000 cubic yards of beach nourishment and modifications to an existing groin field have been proposed to enhance storm protection. An offshore sand/gravel borrow site was located approximately 8 miles offshore in Massachusetts Bay (NOMES Site I). The physical evaluation of this borrow site was performed in 2002 and 2003. Other recent beach nourishment projects include a proposed 300,000 cubic yard beach fill on Plymouth Long Beach utilizing an upland borrow site and a 25,000 cubic yard beach fill at Cockle Cove in Chatham.

In addition to typical shore protection projects, Mr. Ramsey also has been involved with the analysis and design of numerous tidal inlets. In late 2003, the Ellisville Harbor (Plymouth, MA) inlet channel was relocated to a more hydraulically efficient location. This inlet relocation project was used as an engineering alternative to "hard" coastal engineering structures. Mr. Ramsey was responsible for developing the engineering alternative, designing the relocated inlet and the "plug" for the existing inlet channel, as well as permitting and monitoring the project. At St. Lucie Inlet (Stuart, FL), on-going work includes development of the inlet sediment budget, as well as sand management planning relative to impoundment basin and flood shoal sediments.

Mr. Ramsey has a broad range of coastal engineering design experience. Examples of design projects include beach nourishment programs (Plymouth Long Beach, MA and Winthrop Beach, MA), revetment design with a re-curved cap to reduce storm wave overtopping (Plymouth, MA), a weir structure and jetty reconfiguration design used to control saltwater inflow to a coastal pond (Oyster Pond, MA), and design of an enlarged culvert and jetty system to enhance tidal circulation (Little Pond, MA). Much of the design-oriented work includes quantitative evaluation of coastal processes to support engineering design (e.g. wave force and attenuation calculations for Bermuda fast ferry docking facilities, wave heights and overtopping computations needed for shore protection design of a dredged material disposal site in Chesapeake Bay, and scour analyses for the Rochester (NY) fast ferry terminal).

Between 1995 and 1997, Mr. Ramsey served as project manager and chief numerical modeler/analyst for a study of the Horseneck/East Horseneck/Little Beach system in the Towns of Westport and Dartmouth, Massachusetts.  This study entailed quantification of shoreline change (both short- and long-term), an analysis of sediment transport processes, and an alternatives analysis for various engineering solutions to local coastal erosion problems.  Additionally, Mr. Ramsey has designed and conducted performance modeling of beach nourishment projects along the southeastern Massachusetts coast and Boston Harbor islands.

Mr. Ramsey has a broad range of coastal engineering design experience.  Examples of design projects include beach nourishment programs (Spectacle Island, MA and Winthrop Beach, MA), revetment design with a re-curved cap to reduce storm wave overtopping (Plymouth, MA), a weir structure and jetty reconfiguration design used to control saltwater inflow to a coastal pond (Oyster Pond, MA), and designing an enlarged culvert and jetty system to enhance tidal circulation (Little Pond, MA).

Numerical Modeling of Estuarine Processes
Since 1991, Mr. Ramsey has been involved with hydrodynamic analyses of estuary and tidal marsh systems. This work has consisted of one- and two-dimensional hydrodynamic and water quality modeling. Mr. Ramsey has designed field instrumentation programs, analyzed physical and water quality data, and performed modeling tasks for several studies including Delaware Bay (DE/NJ), Popponesset Bay (MA), West Falmouth Harbor (MA), Great/Green/Bournes Ponds (MA), Oregon Inlet (NC), St. Lucie Inlet (FL), Slocums and Little Rivers (MA), Mason Inlet (NC), Poplar Island (MD), and Chatham's coastal embayments (MA). The evaluation of Chatham's coastal embayments provided an in-depth analysis regarding the impacts of existing and future nitrogen loading on the trophic status of each estuary. This analysis formed the basis for long-term nitrogen management strategies within each estuary's watershed. Using previous water quality modeling expertise, Mr. Ramsey teamed with Dr. Brian Howes of the School of Marine Science and Technology at the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth to develop a general estuarine nitrogen modeling approach for the Massachusetts DEP aimed at coastal watershed management. This methodology is now being utilized for nitrogen management by the Massachusetts Estuaries Project (MEP) in their evaluation of 89 coastal embayments in southeastern Massachusetts. Ongoing work includes the hydrodynamic and water quality modeling of numerous estuaries in southeastern Massachusetts as part of the MEP.  

As a logical extension of estuarine/marsh hydrodynamic analyses, Mr. Ramsey has designed restoration efforts for salt ponds and tidal marsh systems.  Two recent coastal pond restoration efforts include Oyster Pond, MA and Poplar Island, MD.  Based on the results of more than a decade of water quality and ecological data, different management alternatives were designed for each of these projects.  Saltwater inflow to Oyster Pond was reduced by a weir to stabilize the brackish environment within the Pond to between 2 and 4 ppt.  This design optimized the salt content within the Pond, where future storm-induced overtopping would not cause severe ecological “shocks” to the system, yet the spawning habitat for the herring population could be preserved.  Ongoing work at Poplar Island involves hydrodynamic and sediment transport modeling aimed at optimizing the marsh restoration design including tidal channel sizing and layout, marsh plain elevations, and inlet structures.  Since Poplar Island is a man-made dredge disposal island, engineering of the restoration effort requires an in-depth understanding of parameters governing natural marshes in the region.

Geotechnical Engineering

Prior to working as a coastal engineer, Mr. Ramsey worked for four years in both the private and public sector as a geotechnical engineer. This work involved design of slope stabilization and soil improvement projects as well as construction oversight and management. He has practical experience in all aspects of geotechnical design including site investigations, design of soil boring plans, analysis of soil data, and design of soil retention structures and soil improvement projects. Geotechnical work at Applied Coastal has incorporated aspects of shore protection design, evaluation of soils and bank stability, erodability and consolidation of in situ sediments at marsh restoration sites, and evaluation of both offshore and upland borrow sites for beach nourishment.


Professional Societies
     American Society of Civil Engineers
          ●   Coastal Engineering Practice Committee

     Association of Coastal Engineers
          ●   Vice-President (2004-present)
          ●   Director (2002-present)
          ●   Chairman of the Continuing Education Committee

Florida Shore and Beach Preservation Association
American Shore & Beach Preservation Association

Link to Publications
 

Coastal Change
Assessment


 

 Hydrodynamic & Water
 Quality Modeling

 
 

 Wave & Sediment
Transport Modeling


 

Online Information
 Management


 

 Coastal
Measurements


 

 Environmental Impact
 Assessment

   




 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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