Shrimp boats docked at Bayou La Batre, Alabama.
Shrimp boats Shrimp boats docked at Bayou La Batre, Alabama. © Carlton Ward Jr.

Stories in Alabama

Lightning Point Shoreline Restoration

A public-private partnership has come together to restore Bayou la Batre's waterfront with breakwaters, wetland restoration and more.

One of Alabama’s most iconic landscapes, the seafood capital of Alabama, and a town steeped in southern history with a dash of French and even Southeast Asian influence. Bayou La Batre is an American landmark, and one that is also under threat.

Read our press release announcing the Lightning Point project.

Together with the City of Bayou La Batre, the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Mobile County, and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, The Nature Conservancy is committed to protecting and preserving this iconic town. The Lightning Point restoration project will revitalize the locally important waterfront area by restoring, enhancing, and protecting the shoreline habitats and providing improved community access for recreation and fishing opportunities.

A Vision for Restoration

The Lightning Point project is designed to achieve multiple restoration goals for the Bayou La Batre coastline.

  • Shoreline Protection: Construct 1.5 miles of overlapping, segmented breakwaters along the shoreline on both sides of the navigation channel to provide a buffer from waves and boat wakes. Construct two jetties (700-800ft long) at mouth of channel to maintain access to the navigation channel for all types of vessels, from commercial shrimp boats to manufactured pilot boats to recreational bay boats.
  • Habitat Creation: Create approximately 40 acres of marsh, tidal creeks, and upland habitats that support a wide range of fish, shellfish, and birds.
  • Managed Access: Complement the City of Bayou La Batre’s Master Plan for the City Docks area with walking paths and a lookout point for community use and enjoyment of the site. Design a low-impact parking lot employing green-infrastructure techniques, such as pervious pavers, bioretention cells, and bioswales, to aid in stormwater management to improve water quality in the area (funding TBD).
  • Beneficial Use of Dredged Material: Utilize dredged material beneficially to create marsh habitat and use thin-layer deposition to build and nourish the marsh for decades to come.