The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Baltimore District, through a contract with Coastal Design & Construction Inc., last month completed the construction of two jetties to prevent shoaling in the channel and to reduce the continual need for dredging at Rhodes Point on Smith Island.
The construction of a stone sill was also completed along 850 feet of eroding shoreline south of the mouth of Sheep Pen Gut to prevent further erosion and contain material dredged as part of the project. Another part of this navigation improvement project includes realignment of a portion of the federal navigation channel in Sheep Pen Gut through dredging.
The goal of this project is to improve navigation, prevent further erosion and to provide boaters from the Smith Island towns of Rhodes Point and Tylerton with more direct access to the Chesapeake Bay.
In addition, vegetation will be planted on the clean dredge material placed behind the stone sill. The intent is to help restore, enhance and protect wetlands, as well as increase shoreline resiliency.
This project is funded through the Corps, Maryland Department of Natural Resources, and the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development. The funding through the Department of Housing and Community Development came from a HUD Community Development Block Grant that stemmed from Hurricane Sandy.
HUD gave the money to the Department of Housing and Community Development, and the Department of Housing and Community Development awarded the funding to Somerset County.
U.S. Army video by Sarah Lazo