Dredging begins on Cape Henry Channel

The USACE Baltimore District and Dutra Group recently began work to dredge approximately 2.36 million cubic yards of material from the Cape Henry Federal Navigation Channel.

The District awarded the $14.8 million contract on September 24, 2021.

This work is part of the larger Baltimore Harbor and Channels Project, supporting the Ports of Baltimore and Virginia. Maintenance dredging of federal channels is necessary to ensure continued safe navigation for vessels and keep the ports open for business, said USACE.

The Dutra Group’s Stuyvesant hopper dredge, which is one of the largest hopper dredges in the U.S., will complete the job.

The dredge material in the Baltimore Harbor and Channels Project consists primarily of mud, silt, sand, and shell. The material is being placed nearby at the Dam Neck Ocean Placement Site, the same location as previous dredging cycles.

In addition to the dredge, the equipment required for this work commonly consists of one or more 4,500 – 8,500 cubic yard hopper dredges – a drag barge, a crew vessel, and a survey vessel.

This maintenance dredging contract for the Cape Henry Channel requires a depth of 51 feet plus one foot of allowable over depth.

According to USACE, the work is anticipated to finish in late spring 2022.

Photo: Dutra