Eforie Nord-23 August

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Area Z4 Eforie Nord-23 August
Place Eforie
Country Romania
Topics Coastal Line study of Eforie Nord to 23 August
Author(s) Ionut-Marian BRATOSIN;Ana-Maria MOTOC;Ana-Maria MATEI;Lavinia Denisa LAZARICA; Alma Alexandrov
Eforie 0271-min.JPG


  • The Black Sea coast is the most important tourist area in Romania, considering the large number of romanian and foreign tourists. Two of the most popular Black Sea resorts are Eforie Nord and Costinesti (Youth resort). In the area of Eforie resort there is also the Lake Techirghiol (the largest saline lake in Romania) recognized for the therapeutic qualities of the mud and for the diversity of bird species within the lake, which is included as a protected area.

Location and scope

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A Landscape System Analysis

A.1 Landscape layers and their system context

Geomorphology, landscape units and coastal typology

  • The studied sector between Eforie Nord and 23 August is a relatively high shoreline, loess-shaped and open beaches, often protected by the dike system, arranged for tourist purposes. Situated at 15-500 m from the shoreline, the cliff has heights between 20-25m and is frequently interrupted by limanas, with the obvious tendency to withdraw through the marine abrasion process. The cliffs and beaches are composed of horizontal limestone layers in the Sarmatian Miocene, forming the rocky promontories, covered with thick layers of quaternary loess of winds during the glacial periods of the past two million years, and heavily eroded in warmer interglacial phases.

Land use

23 August – Originally called Tatlâgeac, at the end of 19th century, the commune had a population of nearly 570 inhabitants. After the establishment of the Communist regime, the name of the commune was changed to 23 August. Nowadays, its population reaches around 5500 inhabitants.

Costinești – Back in the Middle Ages, fishermen and shepherds were the main inhabitants of the commune. Today, Costinești is known for tourism, especially through its student camps.

Eforie – It is a city composed of two villages, Eforie Sud and Eforie Nord. Eforie was founded in the 19th century and it is known for being a balneotherapy resort.

Techirghiol – Founded as well in the 19th century, Techirghiol developed during the years as a spa town, known especially for Lake Techirghiol. It is famous among tourists due to its therapeutic mud, which is used for different procedures such as wraps or massage.

On our studied territory there are different uses of the area, housing, tourism and agriculture being the most important. Besides them, there are other activities, such as: sport fishing, harbor (Eforie Nord), industry, services or recreation (loisir). Regarding the transport infrastructure, it includes: national and communal roads, railways and Tuzla Aerodrome.

Considering the last years, there are no important changes in the land use, even though the studied area consists of some important seaside resorts in Romania. So it is more likely for the main activities of the area to remain the same in the near future, the only change of the land use would be probably because of the tourists, leading to a development of the hotel facilities or transport network.

Green/blue infrastructure

The most dominant green/blue infrastructure in our studied territory is by far the protected area of Lake Techirghiol. Besides it, there can be found various areas with major potential elements of green/blue infrastructure network, namely: the sea, three small lakes and the enormous agriculture fields.

As there is no extreme pressure on the land by different investors and the main potential element of this infrastructure is as well strictly protected, the risk of losing these significant elements is extremely low.

Actors and stakeholders

The area is influenced by various actors, as it is composed of more localities, as well as contains a series of distinct elements that influence the development of the area. Therefore, we can distinguish 7 categories of stakeholders, as follows:

  • Authorities – on a local, regional (judetene) and national level, which deal with the administrative aspects of the cities and villages in the study area
  • ROWATER – The National Administration “Romanian Waters” (Administratia Nationala Apele Romane)
  • NGOs – MARE NOSTRUM, SOR – The Romanian Ornithological Society, as well as different NGOs preoccupied with keeping the Black Sea and Techirghiol Lake clean and interested in the well-being of those areas
  • Locals – from all cities and municipalities in the study area
  • Tourists – from all over Romania and from foreign countries
  • Economic agents – owners of restaurants, hotels, clubs etc., as well as their employees
  • Private investors – especially the ones involved in developing new residential areas along the shoreline of the Black Sea

The impact on the study area, as well as the level to which they are affected differs from one actor to another, depending on their interest zone. Thus, we have actors with a high level of impact on the site, but who are not very affected – such as the authorities or the private investors; on the other side we have actors with a reduced impact power, but who are highly affected by the changes in the area – such as the locals. The way in which the stakeholders affect and are affected, in the case of Eforie – 23 August area, is shown in the power map below.

Sacred spaces and heritage

Eforie has been known as “The City Between the Waters” (“Orașul dintre ape”) due to its location, the city being situated in between the Black Sea and the Techirghiol Lake. The latter is one of the most popular places in our study area, best known for its therapeutic mud which helps with the treatment of multiple diseases, especially the rheumatic ones. In the Techirghiol resort there are treatment spas, along with residential centers, attracting a lot of users and tourists from all around Romania. The most popular is the SPA Sanatorium Efosan, situated in Eforie Nord. Other than the therapeutic mud, Techirghiol is also known for being the biggest saline lake in Romania (1.304 ha), holding over 124 species of birds, some of which considered endangered. For some of these species, as well as for being the biggest winter quarter in the south-eastern part of Romania, the lake has been designated a Natura 2000 site in 2007, as well as a Ramsar site in 2006 (for the red breasted goose).

St. Mary Monastery (“Mânăstirea Sfânta Maria”) is one of the oldest churches in Eforie Nord – 23 August area, dating back to the XVII century, being considered a historical monument. The ensemble attracts tourists, as well as other members of the Orthdox clergy. Beside this, all the villages in our area have their own church, which hold a cultural and sentimental value for the locals.

A less-known, but important part of this area’s heritage is the historical findings from Tuzla village, where traces of primitive living have been found. Those were situated in the Stratonis settlement, which dates back to the III century AD and represented pottery from that period, decorated with various ornaments. Another part of its heritage is marked by the wrecked ship in Costinești, found close to the shoreline of the Black Sea. The ship is of Greek origins and has been here since the 60s and is very popular among tourists, as well as a well-known spot for taking pictures. Along the years, it became a kind of tradition to take pictures with the ship, not only for the tourists, but also for the locals who sometimes use it on souvenirs such as magnets and postcards.

Visual appearance and landscape narrative

Evanghelia Wreck situated in the northern part of the resort, not far away from the beachside, has become an emblematic objective for Costinesti due to its legends linked to its naufraj and the dynamic landscape that it creates. Evanghelia ship has been built up in 1942, 30 years apart from the naufraj of Titanic, in the same naval site on which the english ship was also built. The ship has wrecked in the evening of 14th of October 1968 in the French Golf located near the resort – which has been only a small fishing-village by then. According to the researches, the greeks had set up this accident , so they could get the money the inssurance provided. Unfortunately for them, the whole story had a tragical ending. Based on the report made by the Romanian authorities, the inssurance company decided not to give any money following the failure of the ship. In this context, the romanians got a souvenir from the greeks, and the wreck of the ship became the symbol of one of the most crowded resort from the Romanian seaside.

   Legend says that, in ancient times, an old turkish man named Tekir – both crippled and blind- got to the shore of a lake with his full of plagues donkey. The animal got stuck in the lake’s shore and , although Tekir tried to get him out of there, the stubborn donkey didn’t wanted to leave.

However, when the old man got out of the lake, he couldn’t believe his eyes: he was able to see again and wander freely. Nor the indigent donkey remained unrewarded for its intuition: its open plagues healed. The people of the place heard about the miraculous healing, so more and more of them came to bathe in the lake and to anoint their bodies with the also-miraculous mud. Thereby, the lake got the name ,,Techirghiol” –meaning ,,Lake of Techir’’- (,,Techir”=the name of the old-man and ,,ghiol”= meaning ,,lake’’ in turkish).

The white rock legend says the story of a farewell sultan of the south, who, finding out about our country wanted to take possession of it. So, he sent his army to take possession of this land. The Turks put down the leader of the country and sent him to the sultan hanging with stunts of one hundred camels. Continuing the fight, a sturdy brave tried hard, alongside the country’s army to chase away the Turks, so the turks took him by the neck and took him personally to the sultan when, what have they seen? The fur hat of the sturdy felt off and not great is the wonder that he was actually a young woman- the wife of the voivode fallen into battle. The sultan fell in love immediately with her, not wanting anything more than her to be one of the wifes in the harem. So, the sultan commanded that the woman’s daughter is left there, on the shore, so that she can forget about her existence and stay with him forever. The sultan’s robes made a high stone pillar, off the pillar he hung a swing, and on the swing they built a precious house of agate. The woman threatened him that if he dares to enter her house, she’ll thrown herself into the sea.The robes adviced the sultan to tell the woman that her daughter had died from longing her, because the woman suffered day and night due to being separated of her child. Hearing this tremendous news, the woman begged the wind to end her pain and to blow her off with the house she’d been locked up in.The wind listened her desire, and, the sultan got himself caught up through that crazy flight and shot in the waves of the sea. Seeing all this, the turks run away, forgetting about the child locked up by the sultan. Therefore, the girl got out to search for her mother. She kept running until she got to Tuzla, where, by seeing the ships tempted by the storm, and believing her mother was on of them with the turks, the child got on her knees and begged the wind to have mercy on her, but, crying so badly, her body turnet into stone. And the woman? She got into a yellow little-flower by the fairies, then the flower turned into a fruit, the fruit felt on the shore where a willow came up- right next to the Tuzla’s lighthouse.

A.2 Summary of you landscape system analysis and your development Targets

The Eforie-23 August study area is marked by an important natural habitat (Techirghiol Lake), as well as by its typology, having different developed areas, from settlements found between Techirghiol Lake and the Black Sea to settlement isolated from the shoreline. The coast is just punctually accessible, but has a high potential of development in a sustainable way. The general character of the area is a touristic and balneal one, with the economic focus being on the former. There are two cities (Techirghiol and Eforie) and a village (Costinești) that are the most popular, the other localities holding a much rather local character, but having a great development potential.

Linking our case study to the Sustainable Development Goals projected by UN, we can affirm that at least four of those goals are at risk:

  • 11. Make cities inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable – guiding development in consideration to this goal would eliminate the discrepancies between local cities and villages, especially between the ones on the coast and the ones with indirect access to the shoreline; constructing the area in a sustainable way will further increase the chances of the natural habitats to be preserved and protected and to provide a high-level of living for both citizens and tourists.
  • 13. Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts – this goals would assure a coherent development of the coastline from Eforie Nord to 23 August, as well as help protect the endangered species found at Techirghiol Lake; even if nowadays the impact is not highly visible for everyone in the area, the risks are there and a planning for future approach is much needed in our case.
  • 14. Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources – pollution is a risk factor for our study area, mostly carried out by touristic activities, as well as the tourists themselves; this affects the Black Sea directly, especially through waste left out on the shoreline or in the water directly and actions need to be taken in order to preserve the species which are living in the sea, as well as the birds who occasionally land on the shoreline.
  • 17. Revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development – a good cooperation between stakeholders will direct the actions toward a good development for the area, but for Eforie – 23 August area this is not the case for now, having different authorities handling different neighboring areas or areas of the same typology (areas on the same shoreline – in our case the Black Sea one).

Taking into account the pressures the area faces and the potential it has, we developed a hypothesis for our site, hoping it can be implemented in the future. Therefore, we believe in a sustainable and efficient development of the coast line, having an increase in the green/blue infrastructure along the coast, as well as promoting the existing typology (especially the cliffs), while at the same time aiming for an ecological tourism.

A.3 Theory reflection

  • SITE NAME: Lake Techirghiol

The protected area status is set by Hot. no. 1266/2000. It was declared on 23.03.2006 the RAMSAR site, no. 1610. This site hosts important fleets of protected bird species. According to the data we have the following categories: a) number of species in Annex 1 of the Birds Directive: 38 (b) Number of other migratory species listed in the Annexes to the Convention on Migratory Species (Bonn): 50 c) number of endangered species globally: 5.

  • During the migration period, the site hosts more than 20,000 birds.
  • Other features of the site:

The two dams built in 1983 and 1989 divide the lake into three slopes, resulting in three different areas, namely: - the freshwater zone in the West (1.0-2.3g / l salinity) - Saltwater zone in the central part (6-8g / l salinity) - Saline water zone is in the lake area located near Black Sea (52-55g / l salinity) In the saline side, the mud has therapeutic properties and is used for various treatments in a international physiotherapy medical center built in this area. After the privatization, small buildings belonging to the farmers were built in around the lake, resulting in a negative impact on its lake and fauna.

  • Vulnerability:

The anthropic impact is manifested mainly by tourism, Techirghiol, Eforie Sud and Eforie Nord being stations that attract tourists mainly through promoting the therapeutic properties of sapropelic mud. Other activities carried out in the area are agricultural zones. Lake Techirghiol is confronted with the problem of salinization, with repercussions on the specific composition in elements of flora and fauna characteristic of water hypersaline.

  • PROJECT "Reducing coastal erosion"
  A project worth 3.43 billion lei, the beneficiary of which will be the National Administration "Romanian Waters" (ANAR) - the Dobrogea - Litoral Water Basin Administration, is shown in the annex to the draft decision Government, published on the website of the Ministry of Environment, Water and Forests (MMAP).

According to the Project's Grounding Point, its aim is to provide shoreline erosion protection under annual average conditions and during events with a recurrence period of up to 1/100 years, over a projected life span of 50 years. In this context, the following variables were taken into account: the effect the beach and the protective works have on ensuring protection against erosion to the established standard of protection for each location; the recreational value of the beach and the corresponding minimum width; the erosion rates that are expected to appear for each of the options.

  • The locations included in the investment project are: Agigea area located in Eforie and Agigea ATU, Eforie area located in Eforie UAT, Costinesti area located in Costinesti UAT.

The implementation of the project, by increasing the beach areas, will increase the tourist potential and therefore mainly increase the number of tourists and visitors in these areas. Increasing beach areas will lead to the implementation of conditions that would provide a greater degree of comfort for tourists who will use them, as they are now very crowded due to the reduction of beach areas. By creating new facilities, these resorts will attract a larger number of tourists, which will generate an increase in the revenues of economic agents in the field, with positive implications for local budgets. Also, the emergence of new hotel capacities and related services will imply the creation of new jobs for locals, especially during the summer. As a result, the increase in tourism revenues and related activities as well as the increasing volume of services can be considered as a positive impact on the social and economic environment during the rehabilitation works and the completion of the works, by HG. From the point of view of environmental protection, the document quoted shows that the works of limiting erosion processes, erosion of the coastal zone and preventing its degradation, by their nature, have a temporary negative impact on the environment, only during the execution, the side effects negative ones being eliminated by works to restore the natural frame to the completion of the investment. The proposed works comply with the principles of ecological development of the Black Sea coastal zone, with minimal interventions on the flow regime, without subsequent negative effects, following the execution of the works, without recording environmental pollution phenomena. The materials used will be environmentally friendly, non-polluting and will integrate into the environment. The impact on groundwater can be considered minor due to the types of works that do not prevent the transfer of water from the river into phreatic and vice versa. The impact on the air can be considered minor, according to the Ministry of Environment.

A.4 References

Phase B: Landscape Evaluation and Assessment

B.1 Assessment Strategy

The main goal of the present assessment is understanding the actual problems which affect coastal and marine landscape of the area, by learning about the factors, point out the agents that are influencing it and , being aware of all this thing, find the most adequate ways to properly preserve and sustainably develop the area and its settlements, as well as promoting the place as a touristic area to increase the incomes and invest them in development actions.

Amongst the factors that affect coastal landscape, we identified: -marine abrasion and erosion (by waves and marine currents) -pollution from touristic activities

Punctually, our goals are regarding: -the consolidation and development of the coastline -sustainable development of the settlements -preserve the natural biodiversity -promoting tourism in the area (with a coherent system of integrated beaches & tourism facilities)

The goals we set , are relevant because coastal/marine landscape is a unique natural landscape, with a major potential regarding resources and biodiversity that provides ‘shelter’ for human settlements, also providing people necessary resources to make their living possible in the area.

So, it’s really important to preserve and sustainably develop it, because the benefits provided would be at risk if we don’t take action and help nature maintain its value.

B.2 Mapping

B.3 Problem definition and priority setting

We can divide problems in various categories:

1. Physical origin: erosion, destruction, fragmentation of habitat, caused by winds, waves, geological structure of the cliff, shore and seabed geomorphology features and sediment transport, floods, currents in antithesis

2. Economical origin: disposal, noise pollution, visual pollution, changes in water temperature, salinity, currents, contamination with organic compounds, pesticides, heavy metals, hydrocarbons, nuclear waste, extermination of species caused by coastal and sea infrastructures, pipelines, new planned oil facilities and wind farms, transport, navigation, transport infrastructure, new constructions on the coastal zones, exploration and extraction of mineral resources: sand, gravel for nourishment, waste dropped by big vessels into the sea (ranging from chemicals to non degradable plastic), other polluters: chemical, nuclear, biological; organic waste and minerals.

3. Social origin: corruption, depopulation, aging, labor force migration, low quality public spaces


1. Eforie Nord - Eforie Sud Beach (ROSCI0197), is the only beach in the Southern Romanian coast which has not been modified until 2016, when it was only enlarged;

2. Existing fishing, fishery, aquaculture and fish processing areas at the same place since about 50 years (in spite of all surrounding changes);

3. The existence of environmental institutions here from 1926;

4. The mud rich salty Techirghiol Lake, is a nature reserve and the resort built on its shore is balneary heaven for health, due to the therapeutically mud produced under peloidogenessis processes;

5. Between two salty waters: Techirghiol lake and the Black Sea there is surprisingly the sweet water Belona Lake, due to freshwater internal springs;

6. The Eforie North beach was enlarged last year to a wide up to 200m, by dragging sand from the Black Sea bottom and now, even if the cliff is falling apart in several points, there is a nice golf protected by dikes and surrounded by a green wall cliff up to 80% of it’s surface;

7. The decrease in all economic activities in Eforie South, from tourism to fishing, building asn, even closing the orthopedic surgeries hospital totally reduced pollution in this area.


The identification of key stakeholders and their involvement in the process of identification priorities in this area in order to find solutions the problems above, by using the potential of the area to can create a better quality of life:

- development of environment friendly and active tourism;

- creating community open spaces by cleaning and constructing benches and walkways along the waters (Seaside, Belona, Techirghiol);

- totally restricting new constructions on the beaches and finding solutions for restoring the ruined ones or removing them and returning the land to the nature;

- regeneration of the area between Eforie North and Agigea by eliminating concrete, trainlines, plastic waste;

- saving green areas like the gardens of the Orthopedic Hospital but also of the Agigea Marine - Zoological Station by trying at least to transform them in new socio-ecological systems if their function decreased or was obliged to be stopped;

- quantification of natural risks (coastal erosion) and their effects on the natural, social and economic environment (coastal erosion and its implications for tourism development, but also the impact of coastal protection structures on the marine environment);

- determination of new directions of development, and subsequent uses (e.g.aquaculture);

- limiting fishing activities and other marine activities inside the marine protected areas

- limiting navigational routes (including those belonging to recreational boating)

- qualitative reahabilitation of natural resources: mud - recovery of water quality

- recovery of organisms’ quality and natural resources bio-potential

- restricting the access of big vehicles (from trains to busses) in certain areas

B.4 Theory reflection

Eforie area is so diverse and amazing that every centimeter of it has to offer a huge environment potential. By mitigating the effects of pollution and corruption at least we can return the fascinating land of this area to the nature, and by involving the right stakeholders we can redesign the way of living by bringing a new and solid value to our social, economic and urban life in a strong communion with the environment.

B.5 References

  • [Cross border maritime spatial planning in the Black Sea – Romania and Bulgaria (MARSPLAN BS – BS)]
  • [Lezione Acierno_resilience_maggio 018 parte 1-1.pdf]

Phase C – Strategy and Master Plan

C.1 Goal Setting

Eforie Area is so diverse. Barely can we divide it into 4 different sections with similar natural characteristics and according to that we managed to evaluate the landscape, make it’s SWOT analysis and establish priorities and goals by creating corridors for each activity on the sea and on the seashore:

1. In the northern part of Eforie North:

a) concentrate more leisure and fishing activities on the beach and seashore in the area where there are only 2 fish restaurants and limiting fishing activities in other areas in compliance with GOAL 14: Life below water;

b) bringing back to life the educational area in the Agigea Maritime station functioning there from 1926 by introducing this area in the school practical trips itineraries after regeneration of the area between Eforie North and Agigea by eliminating waste and garbage in accordance with GOAL 4: quality education.

2. The 2nd corridor would be the center of Eforie North would desperately need reinforcing works for the reconstruction of the promenade; the beach was enlarged last year attracting a large number of tourists; the cliff is under a direct pressure now due to economic activities that are developed directly on it, but also indirectly by big capacity hotels with a capacity of more than 150 rooms and can totally collapse. In this regard fighting coastal erosion and constructing a strong promenade is a priority in accordance with GOAL 11: Sustainable cities and communities. In the same time restricting new constructions on the beach and on the cliff is a must.

3. 3rd sector: the narrow strip of land between Eforie North and South, between Techirghiol lake, Belona Lake and the Black Sea

a) revitalizing the Children Camp with all it's dependencies in the north and organizing daily programs and trips for the children to the Marine Station, to the Dolphinarium, to the Institute of Marine Sciences in Constanta, but also organizing competitions in different environments: salt muddy water, water of the Black Sea, games on the beach. Children are the future and in accordance with the GOAL 4, Quality education that develops the intellect, unlocks the imagination and is fundamental for self-respect. It is the key to prosperity and opens a world of opportunities, making it possible for each of us to contribute to a progressive, healthy society.

b) creating community open spaces by cleaning and constructing benches and walkways along the waters (Seaside, Belona, Techirghiol) and intercalating them with good parking places with a decent access from the main road in accordance with the purpose to accommodate a larger number of locals but also tourists. For all of us to survive and prosper, we need new, intelligent urban planning that creates safe, affordable and resilient cities with green and culturally inspiring living conditions according to GOAL no 11 again.

c) finding solutions for restoring the ruined constructions on the beach or removing them and returning the land to the nature, backed up by interdicting the construction of new buildings directly on the beach on such a narrow piece of land between 2 waters: the Black Sea and the lake Belona, or Techirghiol for a better life on land (GOAL 15), by sustainably manage the land degradation.

d) developing the leisure harbor in the south by respecting pollution and waste norms for a decent economic growth (GOAL 8)

4. 4th sector is Eforie South:

a) bringing back to life the orthopedic hospital in the north, or transforming it into a public garden or camping or wellness place by using the healing effects of the salt water from Techirghiol Lake and the sapropelic mud in accordance with Goal 3: Good health and wellbeing and with the Goal 15: Sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, halt and reverse land degradation, halt biodiversity loss.

b) restoring the old fancy villas from the time of Hohenzollern royal family, reinforcing the promenade and revitalizing the whole Eforie South seaside in compliance again with the GOAL 11: Make cities inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable;

All mentioned above can contribute to the development of environment friendly and active tourism, reduction of the coastal erosion with positive effects on the natural, social and economic environment, protecting the natural resources, to the recovery of water quality and natural resources bio-potential.

C.2 Spatial Strategy and Transect

C.3 From Theory of Change to Implementation

To implement our project there are a lot of stakeholders that need to take action and to get involved in order to have a successful outcome. All of them are portrait in the visual below, showing how they relate to the final result of the project, which is also our targeted goal. To name just a few, the authorities (national and local level) play an important part in the realization of the proposed project. They are the ones who need to set the outlines and the funding programs for the projects. The experts (in any domain) are the ones who will contour the project, as well as guard the safe development of the coast, together with satisfying the current needs of the citizens. A good correlation between stakeholders is crucial for a good implementation of our project.

As far, as resources go, we identified four categories: natural, material, finance and work force. All of these are needed in the different stages of implementation (the stages can be seen in the timeline portrait in the second visual). Finance and work force would be the most important resources for our project, as they dictate the way in which the implementation is going, as well as the quality of the assets that will be provided to the community at the end of the project.

C.4 References

D. Process Reflection

  • We can say that this project was a premiere for each participant. The fact that it brought together students from different specialties: geography, tourism, architecture and urbanism, but also a person who has over 20 years of experience in the field of tourism was a unique thing for each of us. It was not easy at first to put these subjects together, each with different ideas, but with time we have adapted and created a link between team members. The assistance of the coordinating teachers and the courses presented were decisive for the project.

For the next time, the most beautiful thing would be a meeting with all the group members on a beach in the study area and a relaxing discussion about the next project.