State of the Beach/State Reports/TX/Beach Access

From Beachapedia

Home Beach Indicators Methodology Findings Beach Manifesto State Reports Chapters Perspectives Model Programs Bad and Rad Conclusion

Texas Ratings
Indicator Type Information Status
Beach Access86
Water Quality75
Beach Erosion9-
Erosion Response-5
Beach Fill7-
Shoreline Structures5 5
Beach Ecology3-
Surfing Areas45
Coastal Development{{{19}}}{{{20}}}
Sea Level Rise{{{21}}}{{{22}}}


Texas has an Open Beaches Act (Texas Natural Resources Code §61.001 et. seq), enacted in 1959, that preserves the public's common-law right to free and unrestricted access to, and use of, the beach. Proposition 9, supported by 77% of the voters in November 2009, elevates the level of protection of the right to beach access to the Texas Constitution. Also important are the GLO Beach/Dune Rules, Title 31 of the Texas Administrative Code §15.1 et. seq. The responsibility for protecting the public's right to use and enjoy the beach is shared by the state and local coastal governments. Cities and counties along the coast are required to adopt laws to protect the public's beach access rights. Usually, these local laws are adopted as beach access plans. Signs should be posted to explain the nature and extent of vehicle controls, parking areas, and access points. Information about Texas coastal access sites is available on the General Land Office (GLO) Website and is compiled into a public outreach guide. For more information please refer to the GLO Website.

Generally, the state owns submerged lands to the line of mean high tide or higher high tide. The public has an easement for access and use of a public beach from mean low tide of the Gulf of Mexico landward to the natural line of vegetation or larger contiguous areas to which the public has acquired a right of use or easement. Some beaches allow vehicles on the public beach, while some are pedestrian only. Where vehicles, including recreational vehicles, are prohibited from driving on and along the beach, public access should be provided every half-mile with adequate parking on or adjacent to the beach to accommodate one parking space for every 15 linear feet of beach.[1]

Structures that become seaward of the line of vegetation are subject to removal at the property owner's expense. In recent years, this point has become a source of contention, as when Tropical Storm Frances pounded Galveston's shores in 1998, resulting in more than 100 homes being deemed to be encroaching on the public beach easement. Some of these homeowners sued to be allowed to repair their homes and reconnect to city services. A federal judge ruled in their favor, granting temporary relief. In a subsequent lawsuit filed by the state, the GLO requested that two of those homes be removed from the public right-of-way. That lawsuit has yet to be resolved. Similar litigation has also involved structures encroaching on the public beach easement and state-owned submerged lands at Treasure Island and the Village of Surfside Beach in Brazoria County.

In June 2006, Commissioner Patterson notified a number of property owners that he might pursue the removal of any houses on the public beach and offered financial assistance to move the houses. The major focus of this action was along a section of public beach adjacent to Beach Drive at the Village of Surfside Beach. This action was embodied in his Plan for Texas Open Beaches, as unveiled in July 2006. A majority of the holdout property owners then sued Patterson in Brazoria County District Court to block the removal of their houses.

On September 12, 2007, Texas State District Judge Patrick Sebesta granted the state’s Motion for Summary Judgement by ruling that the Texas Open Beaches Act was constitutional and ordered the removal of the 16 houses that at that point encroached on the public beach at the Village of Surfside Beach, Texas. Sebesta's judgment was the second judicial ruling within several months that the Texas Open Beaches Act (the other involved the dismissal of the Severance case in federal court) was found to be constitutional.

A number of the property owners accepted the state’s offer for financial assistance to remove or demolish their houses as outlined in the Plan for Texas Open Beaches and as authorized under the Coastal Erosion Planning & Response Act (CEPRA) program. In all, 14 structures were relocated from the public beach at Surfside under CEPRA-funded relocation projects undertaken in 2007, with another relocation project executed on West Galveston Island, and a structure demolition project executed at Treasure Island the same year.

A number of holdouts appealed the September 2007 motion for summary judgment ruling, however. In February 2008, Judge Sebesta denied the Surfside Beach Drive holdout property owners’ motion to allow reconnection to municipal water and sewer services, to make repairs and for vehicular access to the landward side of these structures. However, the judge issued a stay of his previous removal order on the grounds that the property owners were likely to appeal to the US Supreme Court, in agreeing with them that these orders be suspended until the court receives a mandate from a higher court evidencing a final, unappealable judgment affirming removal.

Prior to the landfall of Hurricane Ike on September 13, 2008, 14 hold-out structures remained on the public beach seaward of Beach Drive at the Village of Surfside, eight of which were identified as subject structures eligible for a voluntary buy-out under a FEMA Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP) project for which the Village was granted approval to begin prior to Hurricane Ike. Hurricane Ike destroyed ten of these structures, such that at present, only four (three of which are subject structures under the aforementioned HMGP project) remain standing seaward of beach Drive.

A Line in the Sand: Balancing the Texas Open Beaches Act and Coastal Development was presented at the Coastal Zone 07 Conference in Portland, Oregon.

A report to the 78th Texas legislature from the Texas Coastal Coordination Council titled "Recommendations to Address Beachfront Erosion Along the Upper Texas Coast" was issued in January 2003. The report's recommendations included an increase in enforcement actions (removal of encroachments on public beaches) for the Texas Open Beaches Act and establishing a funding assistance program to aid in relocating structures that encroach upon a public beach. Specifically, one recommendation read:

  • "Encourage the Land Office and the Office of the Attorney General to enter into a memorandum of agreement (MOA) on enforcement of the Open Beaches Act to prevent and remove any encroachments and interferences on the public beach. The Land Office and Office of the Attorney General should work cooperatively to publicize this MOA."

In 2003, the 78th Texas Legislature clarified the Texas Open Beaches Act (Texas Natural Resources Code §61.018) to where the Land Commissioner has the authority to bring forth enforcement actions, by request that the state Attorney General, any county attorney, district attorney, or criminal district attorney, shall file in a suit to obtain either a temporary or permanent court order or injunction, either prohibitory or mandatory, to remove or prevent any improvement, maintenance, obstruction, barrier, or other encroachment on a public beach, or to prohibit any unlawful restraint on the public's right of access to and use of a public beach or other activity that violates the Open Beaches Act. In addition, the Legislature gave the Land Commissioner, the Attorney General, or a county, district, or criminal district attorney the authority to recover penalties and the costs of removing any improvement, obstruction, barrier, or other encroachment if it is removed by public authorities pursuant to an order of the court. The Legislature also gave the Land Commissioner the authority to directly issue removal orders under §61.0183, and to assess daily civil penalties for violations, such penalties to be cumulative for each day a violation occurs or continues is a separate violation. Finally, the Land Commissioner was also given the authority to request that the state’s Attorney General or any county attorney bring suit for a declaratory judgment to try any issue affecting the public's right of access to or use of the public beach.

Jerry Patterson, who became Texas Land Commissioner in January 2003, believed that the Open Beaches Act should be more specific as it relates to structures that end up on the public beach.[2] HB 1457, passed by the 78th Texas Legislature, gave the Commissioner the authority to issue moratorium orders to allow houses to stay on the beach for up to 2 years after a storm.[3] As part of the GLO’s effort to enforce the OBA, Commissioner Patterson issued moratorium orders for 116 houses on the public beach effective June 7, 2004, with an expiration of June 6, 2006. The orders allowed for orderly repairs to homes after a storm and were mailed to homeowners in advance of Patterson's public announcement on June 8, 2004. The orders prohibited state and local officials from taking legal action under the Texas Open Beaches Act (OBA) to remove structures found to be seaward of the vegetation line that marked the boundary of the public beach. The purpose of the enforcement moratorium was to allow time for the natural line of vegetation to recover following a significant tropical storm event, thereby allowing for a re-evaluation of the naturally occurring line of vegetation after two years with respect to each of the affected structures. Such a re-evaluation would determine which of these structures still encroached upon the public beach easement and that might constitute barriers to public beach access and possible beachfront hazards, therefore being subject to an enforcement action by the Commissioner. With every tropical storm or hurricane, erosion may place more beachfront structures at risk of violating the Open Beaches Act.

In the wake of Hurricane Ike, the GLO adopted a new rule relating to disaster recovery orders, as codified under Texas Administrative Code 31TAC §15.13. This rule provides procedures for the Land Commissioner to issue orders allowing a local government to utilize temporary standards for stabilization and repair of structures, dune restoration and restoration of beach access during a period of recovery from a severely-damaging or declared natural disaster.

In June 2006, Texas Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson announced his Plan for Texas Open Beaches. The eight-point plan was a comprehensive effort to address the issue of private property on public beaches in the State of Texas. The plan laid out four points for GLO action, and four points requiring action from the Texas Legislature. The plan initially made available $1.3 million in CEPRA Cycle 4 funds for immediate relocation assistance, as well as recommendations that would allow counties to establish guidelines for new construction. The Land Commissioner would also have the authority to deny state funding for beach renourishment projects until local governments establish those guidelines. The plan left open the prospect for litigation should its proposed incentives fail. In fact, the state continues to pursue lawsuits against the owners of a number of structures determined to be on public land. Litigation costs have exceeded $400,000 in some cases, which make the case that incentives are the most cost-effective solution. Critics of the plan pointed out that homeowners wouldn’t be eligible for state reimbursements until after they had their homes relocated and that the projected initial $40,000 per house reimbursement won’t cover the current cost of property lots. Based on an initial application of 19 eligible applicants, the Commissioner raised the per-project maximum reimbursable amount to $50,000. In the interest of flexibility and working with homeowners to achieve the relocation of these structures, the Commissioner allowed those already in litigation to remain so, allowed for homeowners to bring forth future claims, and if unable to afford up to $50,000 in relocation expense up-front, to assign their reimbursement payment over to any contractors hired to execute the relocation project. Because CEPRA funds were utilized to fund these projects, the cost of acquiring new real estate (lots) was not authorized by the CEPRA statute. In total to-date, fourteen structure relocation projects were executed at the Village Surfside Beach, one at Terramar Beach on west Galveston Island, and one structure was demolished at Treasure Island.

The items for Texas legislative action identified in the Plan for Texas Open Beaches were addressed by new provisions in the Open Beaches Act and the Dune Protection Act, as implemented by the 80th Texas Legislature in House Bill 2819. The statutory changes allow the commissioner to charge administrative penalties and issue removal orders for structures built on the public beach and present health and safety hazards. Draft rules to implement these changes were prepared for public comment, and the rules adopted as codified under 31 TAC.

Legislation was introduced during the 81st Texas Legislature in 2009 proposing that all local governments with jurisdictions adjacent to the Texas coast be required to adopt local erosion response plans, and that the Land Commissioner take into consideration whether such a plan is in place as one of several considerations when allocating CEPRA funds. This legislation as introduced did not require that set-backs be adopted as part of these plans, but made inclusion of them optional.

On March 11, 2009 State Representative Richard Pena of Laredo filed HJR102. HJR102 is a proposed State Constitutional Amendment to the Texas Bill of Rights or Section I of the Constitution. The purpose of the amendment is to protect the public's right to access and use the State's public beaches. The following is HJR102 as it was submitted.

H.J.R. No. A102

A JOINT RESOLUTION proposing a constitutional amendment to protect the right of the public to access and use public beaches.



Article I, Texas Constitution, is amended by adding Section 33 to read as follows:

Sec. 33

(a) In this section, "public beach" means a state-owned beach bordering on the seaward shore of the Gulf of Mexico, extending from mean low tide to the landward boundary of state-owned submerged land, and any larger area extending from the line of mean low tide to the line of vegetation bordering on the Gulf of Mexico to which the public has acquired a right of use or easement to or over the area by prescription or dedication or has established and retained a right by virtue of continuous right in the public under Texas common law.
(b) The public, individually and collectively, has an unrestricted right to use and a right of ingress to and egress from a public beach. The right granted by this subsection is dedicated as a permanent easement in favor of the public.
(c) The legislature may enact laws to protect the right of the public to access and use a public beach and to protect the public beach easement from interference and encroachments.
(d) This section does not create a private right of enforcement.


This proposed constitutional amendment shall be submitted to the voters at an election to be held November 3, 2009. The ballot shall be printed to provide for voting for or against the proposition: "The constitutional amendment to protect the right of the public, individually and collectively, to access and use the public beaches bordering the seaward shore of the Gulf of Mexico."

All five of Surfrider Foundation's Texas chapters (Central Texas, South Texas, Texas Coastal Bend, Texas Upper Coast, and Galveston) strongly supported Proposition 9, which passed overwhelmingly on November 3, 2009.

The Texas Open Beaches Act, which protects public beach access in Texas received quite a blow in November 2010 with the issuance of a conservative and pro-private property rights judgment from the Texas Supreme Court. A detailed analysis and links to the opinion and dissent can be found here. A Houston Chronicle article on this decision can be found here. As a direct result of this ruling, Texas Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson canceled a scheduled $40 million beach fill project in Galveston because state law prohibits the spending of public money to benefit private property. Here's an article written by a Surfrider activist in Texas on this issue. The Texas Open Beaches Act was dealt a further blow in March 2012 when the Texas Supreme Court essentially reaffirmed their earlier ruling. Here's what one of our Texas activists had to say about this.

The Texas Legislature recently passed H.B. 3459, which the governor signed into law June 14, 2013. The new law amends the Texas Open Beaches Act, which means it will have an effect on public beach access. More on this.

The current Texas Land Commissioner, George P. Bush, is taking a radically different approach to interpretation and enforcement of the Texas Open Beaches Act than his predecessor. In an article published in the Houston Chronicle on October 26, 2015, Commissioner Bush was quoted as saying "I campaigned on an aggressive private property ownership perspective in the lens of the court, and the court has made that decision fairly clear." Bush said that he believes private property rights and the Open Beaches Act are compatible.

Site Inventory

Approximately 38% of coastal lands in Texas are publicly owned.[4] There are almost 360 public access sites in Texas. This corresponds to about one public access site for every mile of shoreline. Some are solely for pedestrians, while others allow vehicles onto the beach. State rules require at least one public access site for every ½-mile of shoreline for pedestrian beaches closed to vehicular traffic. Access point densities vary for vehicular beaches. Where vehicles are restricted, and beaches are accessible by public road or ferry, parking is available based on one space per 15 feet of beach.

The state employs various methods to minimize environmental impacts of coastal access, including designated accessways, educational signage, and dune walkovers. Access projects are funded through the Coastal Management Program (CMP) or the Coastal Impact Assistance Program (CIAP) grants.

The online Texas Beach and Bay Access Guide, 2nd Edition allows users to locate a variety of public access sites, coastal state parks, and recreational areas along the Texas Coast. This guide highlights the five areas that make up the Texas Coast: Southeast Texas, Houston-Galveston, Golden Crescent, Coastal Bend, and the Lower Rio Grande Valley. Each section provides a brief description of the primary recreation activities of each county, and includes location maps and recreational grids. The maps show the general location of marinas, county/state/federal parks, boat ramps, and areas of recreational interest. The recreational grids provide information about available activities such as fishing, swimming, and picnicking, and amenities such as boat ramps and facilities that are accessible to the disabled. Phone numbers are also provided, so that users can call ahead to get complete directions and any updates to site conditions.

A new resource unveiled in 2009 is, a website that allows you to:

There is also a Texas Beach Accessibility Guide.

The City of South Padre Island has their own Beach Access Guide that has maps, photos and descriptions of 24 beach access points.

Extensive aerial and ground photography of the Texas coast is available here and here. Also check out the GLO's GIS Maps.

Coastal access points are also noted on the county maps provided on the Texas Beach Watch Program website.

Additional public facilities are being constructed through the awarding of Coastal Management Program (CMP) Grants to local communities.

Besides the online Texas Beach and Bay Access Guide noted above, you can find information about Texas State Parks.

An interesting beach access issue is developing in Cameron County, where a private company called Space Exploration Technologies Corp., or SpaceX, is considering building a launch facility on a portion of Boca Chica Beach. This is a component of Cameron County's plan that encompasses revised erosion protection, public beach access, coastal construction, and dune protection and beach management plan. The Texas General Land Office requires communities along the coast to file a plan to protect and promote public access to beaches. The proposed plan addresses temporary beach closures at Boca Chica related to launches, planning and scheduling of launches, stipulation that alternative beach accesses will remain available, and required public notice of launch dates.

Beach Attendance Records

The CMP notes that the coastal region is Texas's second most popular tourist attraction, generating $7 billion a year. However, detailed information on beach attendance in Texas was not readily available.

Some beach attendance data is contained in the economic and natural resource cost-benefits evaluation sections of the CEPRA Reports to the 80th (February 2007), 81st (January 2009) and 82nd (2011) Texas Legislature.

Beach attendance data is reported to GLO quarterly by local governments charging beach user fees and is updated every two years.

Economic Evaluation of Beaches

As noted above, the coastal region is Texas's second-most popular tourist attraction, generating $7 billion a year. An economic evaluation of selected CEPRA erosion response projects is contained in each CEPRA legislative report. Section Three of the Report to the 81st Texas Legislature (issued January 2009) discusses a benefit-cost ratio of 5.9 for all the CEPRA Cycle 4 construction projects examined, meaning that on average for every state-appropriated dollar spent on each study project, the average return on that investment was nearly six dollars. More detailed information on the economic and natural resource cost-benefits of these projects is found under Appendix A of the legislative report. A detailed storm damage reduction benefit was also undertaken as discussed in this report.

The CEPRA report to the 82nd Texas Legislature (2011) states:

According to Southwick Associates, the total Texas economic impact from saltwater sport fishing is more than $1.79 billion per year. According to the Governor’s Office in 2009, the Texas Gulf Coast tourism region is home to more than 27 percent of the state total of hotel rooms and has consistently accounted for an estimated 28 percent of the direct travel spending in Texas annually. Direct travel spending in the region totaled $14.5 billion.

Also see the Executive Summary of the Coastal Texas 2020 report.

The Texas Shore and Beach Preservation Association has reportedly recently completed a report on the economic value of beaches.

The report Valuing Beach Closures on the Padre Island National Seashore (2008) estimates the economic loss of hypothetical beach closures on the Padre Island National Seashore on the Gulf Coast of Texas. The aggregate losses on Padre Island were highest on weekend days in July estimated at $171,000 per day of closure (2001$). They were lowest on weekdays in September at $25,000. Per trip losses were about $28. A similar closure of beaches near Galveston resulted in losses of $263,000 (week day) and $852,000 (weekend day) with a per trip loss of $30.

In 2007, the Gross Domestic Product of the Texas travel industry was $23.1 billion, supporting 534,000 jobs.

In 2003, the Gulf of Mexico’s ocean economy employed more than 562,000 people, paid wages of more than $13.2 billion, and contributed over $32 billion to the region’s gross state product.[5] Tourism and recreation comprised 71 percent of the employment in the Gulf region’s 2003 ocean economy.[6]

The above statistics are from a report by NRDC that summarizes the results of several surveys and evaluations that attempt to quantify the positive economic impact of beach and ocean recreation, recreational and commercial fishing, and ecosystems value from the Gulf of Mexico's ocean resources.

NOAA's Office for Coastal Management (OCM) has written a discussion of the recreational value of beaches, in the context of beach fill projects. In 2009 OCM released Introduction to Economics for Coastal Managers, a basic introduction to economic ideas and methods that can be applied to coastal resource management. The economic concepts provided in this introduction are illustrated through several case studies. Other OCM/Digital Coast publications can be found here.

The following two websites provide information on the economic value of coasts and the ocean throughout the country.

The National Ocean Economics Program (NOEP) provides a full range of the most current economic and socio-economic information available on changes and trends along the U.S. coast and in coastal waters. You can download data on jobs and GDP associated with specific types of coastal activities for each coastal state. You also can download data on commercial fishing and landings. The NOEP made public their fully updated Non-Market Valuation website in September 2008. The largest database in the world of studies documenting the environmental and recreational values of ocean resources, the website now includes 1) an updated methodologies section, 2) frequently asked questions, 3) examples of how Non-Market valuation influences public policy, and 4) an expanded table summarizing valuation estimates from across the United States. In 2014 NOEP released an updated State of the U.S. Ocean and Coastal Economies - 2014, which points out that there is an imbalance between the economic importance of coasts and coastal oceans and the federal support for stewardship of these resources. According to the report, coastal states supply over 81 percent of American jobs and contribute $13 trillion to the economy, or 84 percent of GDP. More on this here. The National Ocean Economics Program previously released State of the U.S. Ocean and Coastal Economies - 2009, which presents time-series data compiled over the past 10 years that track economic activities, demographics, natural resource production, non-market values, and federal expenditures in the U.S. coastal zone on land and water. The report states that coastal states account for more than 80 percent of the U.S. economy. The most recent report released by NOEP is the State of the U.S. Ocean and Coastal Economies - 2016. The Center for the Blue Economy (CBE) at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey now houses the National Ocean Economics Program (NOEP).

The website of Restore America's Estuaries has a report The Economic and Market Value of Coasts and Estuaries: What's At Stake?. According to the report, U.S. coasts and estuaries that have been protected and managed in a sustainable way are worth billions. Beaches, coastal communities, ports, and fragile bays are economic engines that drive and support large sectors of the national economy. The report focuses on aspects of coasts and estuaries that are most dependent on ecologically healthy conditions. The authors also examined a growing body of research that reveals the economic consequences of environmental change in coastal and estuary ecosystems.

A report A Review and Summary of Human Use Mapping in the Marine and Coastal Zone was published in December 2010. This report was prepared by ERG for NOAA's Coastal Services Center. The report evaluated different methods and approaches to measure human uses of the coastal and marine environment. The uses were divided into 1) military and industrial uses, 2) consumptive uses (e.g., fishing) and 3) non-consumptive activities (e.g., swimming, surfing, kayaking).

The economic value of beaches can increase or decrease due to a number of factors, including beach width; the presence or absence of amenities such as parking, restrooms or lifeguard services; the suitability of the beach for activities such as surfing or swimming; and the presence or absence of pollution and beach litter. In June 2014 NOAA published an infographic on the high cost of marine debris based on the report Assessing the Economic Benefits of Reductions in Marine Debris: A Pilot Study of Beach Recreation in Orange County, California, which was prepared by Industrial Economics, Inc. for NOAA's Marine Debris Division. It found that having debris on the beach and good water quality are the leading factors in deciding which beach residents visit. Reducing marine debris by even 25 percent at beaches in and near Orange County, California, could save residents approximately $32 million during the summer by not having to travel long distances to other beaches. Beach characteristics were collected for 31 popular Southern California public beaches from San Onofre Beach to Zuma Beach. Orange County residents were also surveyed on their recreation habits, including how many day trips they took to the beach from June - August 2013, where they went, how much it cost them, and which beach characteristics are important to them. The results provided in an estimate if how much Orange County residents would potentially benefit, including how often they visit beaches and how much they would save in travel costs, over a summer season by reducing marine debris at some or all of these 31 beaches. The study focused on Orange County because of the number and variety of beaches, their importance to permanent residents, ease of access, and likelihood that marine debris would be present. Researchers believe that, given the results, the study could be modified for assessing similar coastal communities in the United States.

For additional general discussion of the economic impacts of beaches, please see the article Economic Impact of Beaches.

Perception of Supply and Demand

On Galveston Island, many of the beaches have been turned into de facto private beaches as a result of the city determining that these are "pedestrian only" beaches. The subdivisions that are built adjacent to these beaches are supposed to provide the parking for one car for every 15 linear feet of beach that is closed to vehicles (GLO beach/dune rules). Unfortunately, a lack of signs pointing out these parking areas, erosion of on-beach parking, landowners removing "Beach Access" signs and placing illegal "No Trespassing" signs, all combine to discourage the average beachgoer from utilizing the beaches to which they have legal access.

The Coastal Management Program provided $11,500 to the City of Galveston for public beach access signage following Hurricane Ike. The signs are intended to facilitate public beach access. The GLO conducts regular assessments of access point availability on Galveston Island to ensure consistency with state law and the local Beach Access Plan.

The general public (casual beach visitor) is directed to county parks and other paid parking locations while over 20 miles of prime beach is devoid of visitors except for those who are either renting a beach house or own one. In other words, the public is kept off the beaches they have a legal and historical right to use and enjoy. The five Surfrider chapters in Texas are working with the City of Galveston and elsewhere along the Gulf coast to improve public beach access in these areas but landowners are reluctant to provide parking, signage, or other concessions to open up "their" beaches to the public.

In most other areas of the state, there is ample access by driving on the beach and the public is free to enjoy the beach, however, some beaches charge a per vehicle fee for access.

Although there is enough coastal access and coastal public transportation to meet current average demand, peak demands are not now met and projected demands in 10 years will not be met without further expansion of the access program. Beach parking also must be expanded to meet projected future needs. The GLO is working cooperatively with local governments to ensure that future access needs are met.[7]

Public Education Program

Information on the Texas Adopt-a-Beach Program can be found on GLO's Website.

The state uses maps, brochures, signs, and information on their Website to educate the public about coastal access, erosion, beach fill, and related topics.

Contact Info

Natalie Bell
Texas GLO
Middle Coast & Lower Coast

Rajiv Vedamanikam
Texas GLO
Upper Coast

Ellis Pickett
Surfrider Foundation


  1. Jeb Boyt, Coordinator, TCMP. Written correspondence. February 22, 2002. Tammy Brooks, Program Specialist, TCMP, Surfrider State of the Beach survey response. January 27, 2003.
  2. "Patterson to look into Open Beaches Act", by Richard Massey. The Daily News, November 7, 2002.
  3. Ellis Pickett, Surfrider Texas Chapter, personal communication, February 21, 2003.
  4. Tammy Brooks, Program Specialist, TCMP. Surfrider State of the Beach survey response. January 27, 2003.
  5. Colgan, Charles. 2008. “The Ocean Economy of the Gulf of Mexico in National Perspective” in The Changing Coastal and Ocean Economics of the Gulf of Mexico. Edited by Judith Kildow, Charles Colgan, and Linwood Pendleton, University of Texas Press. (pp. 2, 3). Please note that this analysis relied on 2003 data from the National Ocean Economics Program ( The author estimated the ocean economy of Florida by using only those counties adjacent to the Gulf of Mexico, from Monroe County north; Florida counties on the Atlantic coast were excluded.
  6. Colgan, Charles. 2008. “The Ocean Economy of the Gulf of Mexico in National Perspective” in The Changing Coastal and Ocean Economics of the Gulf of Mexico. Edited by Judith Kildow, Charles Colgan, and Linwood Pendleton, University of Texas Press. (pp. 2, 3). Please note that this analysis relied on 2003 data from the National Ocean Economics Program ( The author estimated the ocean economy of Florida by using only those counties adjacent to the Gulf of Mexico, from Monroe County north; Florida counties on the Atlantic coast were excluded.
  7. Tammy Brooks, Program Specialist, TCMP. Surfrider State of the Beach survey response. January 27, 2003.

State of the Beach Report: Texas
Texas Home Beach Description Beach Access Water Quality Beach Erosion Erosion Response Beach Fill Shoreline Structures Beach Ecology Surfing Areas Website
2011 7 SOTB Banner Small.jpg