The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Buffalo District and its contractor, Michigan-based Great Lakes Docks and Materials, L.L.C., have completed substantial construction of a beneficial use of dredged sediment placement area in Ashtabula Harbor.
According to the Corps, this phase of the project included creation of a submerged 1,500 linear foot stone wall off the west and south portions of the Ashtabula Harbor East Breakwater at a cost of $6.5 million. The wall will retain approximately 400,000 cubic yards of dredged material used to create a new wetland ecosystem.
“By rebuilding ecosystems and providing a cost-effective disposal method for dredged material, this project will help further northeast Ohio’s environmental sustainability and ensure the Harbor can continue to put money back into the Ashtabula community and drive our regional economy,” commented Congressman Dave Joyce.
“Nearshore placement to re-establish habitats is one of the most promising options for beneficial use of material dredged by the Army Corps,” said Lt. Col. Eli Adams, commander of USACE Buffalo District.
The beneficial use of dredged material project at Ashtabula is being conducted under the Corps of Engineers Continuing Authority Program Section 204 and is cost-shared 65% federal (USACE) and 35% non-federal Ashtabula City Port Authority. When the decade-long project is completed, it will create approximately 16.5 acres of pristine wetland habitat.
The next step of the project is placement of dredged material. USACE plans to issue a contract to place the first 100,000 CY of sediment at the site as part of the routine operations and maintenance (O&M) dredging efforts for the harbor.
This work is expected to begin in the spring-to-early summer timeframe. The remaining sediment will be placed via future O&M dredging contracts.