Housatonic River Dredging to Start in October

Maintenance dredging of the lower portion of the Housatonic River Federal Navigation Channel in Stratford and Milford, Conn., will be completed under the terms of a $9.3 million contract recently awarded by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, New England District.

Work will be accomplished by Cashman Dredging and Marine Contracting Company, LLC of Quincy, Mass. The dredging work is scheduled to start in October 2017 and take several months to complete, USACE said in its latest announcement.

The state of Connecticut is funding the project and signed a memorandum of agreement with the Corps so that this work could be done.

“This project consists of dredging approximately 270,000 cubic yards of clean fine-grain sand from the authorized 18-foot deep, by 200-foot wide Housatonic River Federal navigation channel,” said Project Manager Jack Karalius, of the Corps’ New England District, Programs and Project Management Division in Concord, Mass.

“The sand will be placed directly onto Hammonasset Beach State Park in Madison, approximately 33 miles from the dredge site, in order to nourish the beach which has been losing substantial sand over the past decade.”

The dredging window, due to environmental constraints, is October 1, 2017 to January 31, 2018, although the lowest portion may be dredged until February 28, 2018 and the beach may be graded into March 2018.

The Corps first began work on the Housatonic River in 1871 and has since made several improvements to facilitate navigation for commercial and recreational vessels.

At present, the project consists of: a 13-mile-long channel stretching from the mouth of the river to Derby and Shelton. For the first five miles, from the mouth of the river to Culvers Bar in Milford, the channel is 18 feet deep and 200 feet wide, USACE said.

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