A $138 million USACE’s project to construct beaches and dunes on Long Beach Island, which was temporarily suspended over the winter, has resumed, according to the NJ Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Bob Martin.
Three dredges are currently pumping sand in the Borough of Beach Haven and the works will continue throughout the barrier island this summer.
Great Lakes Dredge & Dock Company, contracted by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for the job of constructing engineered beaches and dunes for nearly 13 miles on Long Beach Island, had left the project last December to work on other assignments.
But the dredging company began returning equipment over the past several weeks to complete the work on Long Beach Island.
“While we were disappointed the dredges abandoned the project and left some parts of Long Beach Island vulnerable for the winter, we are delighted that work has resumed,” Commissioner Martin said.
“We remain committed to work with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to complete this project and provide maximum coastal projection for the people, homes and businesses of Long Beach Island.”
“There is a great deal of competition nationwide for dredging equipment capable of this type of work,” said Lt. Col. Michael Bliss, Commander of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Philadelphia District. “But, as planned, we now have three of Great Lakes’ hopper dredges on hand to work on this vital project, which will reduce the risk of storm damages for communities on Long Beach Island.”
The project began last May, with work starting in the Borough of Ship Bottom, as well as Brant Beach and other parts of Long Beach Township.
Last week, the Liberty Island dredge started pumping sand just north of West Osborn Avenue on the border of Beach Haven and Long Beach Township, while the Dodge Island and Padre Island were discharging about two miles north at East 13th Street.
Work in Beach Haven is expected to be completed by the first week in June, before Great Lakes Dredge & Dock moves south to build much-needed beach and dunes in the Holgate section of Long Beach Township, at the southern tip of the island.
Once the work in Holgate is completed, the contractor will head north to North Beach and then to Loveladies in Long Beach Township to complete the project.