A project aimed at replenishing beach along the Potomac River to shore up the fortunes of the venerable resort town of Colonial Beach, Va., has apparently withstood the ravages of some severe winter storms, authorities said.

Colonial Beach borrowed $238,000 for its share of a million-dollar state and federal project, which entailed the dumping 100,000 cubic yards of sand on two quarter-mile stretches of beach along the river.

Now, with much of the winter believed safely behind, early indications show no major loss of sand, according to Gary Anderson, technical adviser to the Virginia Commission on the Conservation and Development of Public Beaches.

"I have talked with the corps Army Corps of Engineers in Baltimore about the project and they haven't seen any perceived major loss of volume over the winter months," Anderson said.

Town officials reportedly link the beach project to a possible increase in economic benefits from the tourist trade. Colonial Beach is east of Fredericksburg and is popular as a recreation area among residents of Virginia's Northern Neck.

Rebuilding the public beach is expected to take years. Annual replenishment of sand in eroded areas could require as much as 3,000 cubic yards of sand each spring, Anderson said.