Governor Ralph Northam this week announced completion of a project partnership agreement between the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Virginia Marine Resources Commission (VMRC) to launch the design and construction of the Tangier Island Jetty in Accomack County.
This federal and state funded infrastructure project will protect the western portion of the navigation channel and harbor for the Town of Tangier and the associated seafood industry infrastructure.
The Tangier Island Jetty involves construction of a straight stone jetty at the southwestern tip of Uppards Island, extending south into the water approximately 494 feet from its point of origin into the navigation channel.
“The jetty project will help protect the Town’s navigation channel and harbor from wave action and adverse weather conditions than can damage work boats, docks, and crab houses,” said VMRC Commissioner Steven G. Bowman.
In 1994, Congress authorized the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to study a jetty for the Town of Tangier to protect the navigation channel and infrastructure along it. The initial phase of this project was launched in 1995 with a reconnaissance report.
A full feasibility study was initiated in 2009. In the feasibility study, USACE considered several measures to protect the navigation channel from wave action. The study included a revetment, a jetty, offshore breakwaters, geotextile tubes, and relocating harbor facilities.
Ultimately, the only measure that was deemed to be effective and feasible was the construction of a jetty. Costs for design and construction of the Tangier Island Jetty project total $2,646,000, with 20 percent provided through state funding.