Dredging has started at Ballina’s boat harbor and Fishery Creek to improve access for the commercial fishing fleet and recreational vessels.
According to the NSW Government Department of Primary Industries, the $1.5 million contract was awarded to a Yamba company, National Dredging Services, with works now underway and expected to take around 10 weeks to complete.
Stephen Wills, Group Director Infrastructure and Land Management, said: “About 16,000 cubic meters of material will be dredged from Ballina boat harbor which will allow the water to run out of the dredged sand.”
“Around 7,000 cubic meters of material will be dredged from Fishery Creek and pumped to the southern side of the Richmond River at Mobbs Bay for beach renourishment and bank protection,” added Mr Wills.
After receiving information from waterway users, bed-level surveys were conducted that identified shallow areas within the boat harbor and Fishery Creek that require maintenance dredging for safe berthing and navigation.
The Department has increased the scale of dredging to remove almost double the amount of sediment from the boat harbor and Fishery Creek than was originally proposed. The extra work will ensure that water depths for safe navigation access are maintained for a much longer period and over a wider area within the boat harbor.
The works for the boat harbor are funded under the NSW Government’s Coastal Infrastructure Program which supports access to state owned maritime infrastructure. The works at Fishery Creek are funded through Roads and Maritime Services’ Waterways Fund which supports projects that improve safety and accessibility for recreational boaters.