While an official analysis of Hurricane Irma's impact on beach erosion is not yet available, early indications show some optimism.
"We didn't get a huge storm surge like we feared, so I don't think we have much of a problem with erosion," said Alan Johnson, mayor of St. Pete Beach, historically a problem area. "We did not fare too badly."
The erosion from Hurricane Hermine in 2016, in comparison, was the worst in almost a decade, according to county beach experts.
A $9.5 million effort to slow erosion at Upham Beach began in August, which includes installing rock T-groins. The structures are meant to prevent the loss of sand and protect the vulnerable beach against storms.
Pinellas County secured $30 million in May for beach renourishment projects on 10.5 miles of Sand Key, Upham Beach and Treasure Island. The federal projects are administered by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.