The Seattle Engineer District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has informed the Port of Skagit that the next round of maintenance dredging in the Swinomish Channel will begin in late September.
On July 22, 2014, the Corps issued a contract to American Construction Co. Inc. for $820,750, to complete the FY14 Swinomish Channel Maintenance Dredging project. American also was the contractor for the last round of dredging in 2012-13.
According to the Corps, this year’s dredging will be confined to the south end of the channel, where the accumulation of sediment is most prevalent. The project is expected to take 35 to 40 working days to complete and should be finished around Christmas.
A 2010 economic study commissioned by the Port of Skagit found that an estimated 1,260 moorage slips and 25 marine-related businesses are located in or near La Conner on the Swinomish Channel. Marine businesses and boaters on the channel generate sales of approximately $92.6 million in business revenue annually.
Direct employment on the channel totals 521 jobs with an income of $25.8 million, for an average annual income of $49,000. The combined maritime activity on the channel generates total employment of 1,045 jobs with income of $50.3 million in Washington State, the study found.