- Associated Press - Wednesday, January 18, 2017

GALVESTON, Texas (AP) - Crews have begun transferring up to 1 million cubic yards of sand in dredging to fortify a stretch of Southeast Texas beach and reduce erosion.

A spokeswoman for the Galveston Park Board of Trustees says the nearly $20 million expansion will widen the beach by about 150 feet. Mary Beth Bassett, in a statement Wednesday, said the goal is to replenish more than 3 miles of beach between 12th and 61st streets.

State, federal and Galveston funds are paying for the three-part expansion.

The first two phases were completed in 2015. Bassett says the final work should take four to five months.

Pumping began Monday to move sand from the Galveston Ship Channel. The staging area is Stewart Beach. Ramps placed over the transfer pipes will allow public beach access.

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