Buffalo, NY— The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Buffalo District has awarded a $6.5 million contract to Great Lakes Dock and Dredged for the construction of a beneficial use of dredged material placement area designed to handle approximately 400,000 cubic yards of dredged material.
The contractor has been given the approval to immediately start construction of a 1,500 linear feet of stone placement off the west and south portions of the Ashtabula Harbor East Breakwater and it is expected to take 12 – 14 weeks after stone placement begins.
This project is being conducted in close coordination with the Ashtabula City Port Authority, Ohio Environmental Protection Agency, and the Ohio Department of Natural Resources. Without the strong partnership this long-term solution to dredged material management would not be possible.
“This $6.5 million award for the beneficial use of dredged material project at Ashtabula is great news for Lake Erie and Northeast Ohio." said U.S. Senator Rob Portman. "As co-chair of the Senate Great Lakes Task Force, working to protect our Great Lakes is a top priority for me. I am pleased to see this partnership between USACE Buffalo District, OEPA, ODNR, and the Ashtabula City Port Authority, which will not only help ensure the safe navigation of our waterways, but will also help preserve our environment. I look forward to following the progress of this project.”
“This is great news for Lake Erie’s ecosystem and our regional economy,” said U.S. Congressman Dave Joyce. “By creating a long-term solution to dredged material management, this project will not only help restore and create natural habitat for aquatic life, but also support jobs and improve the quality of life for Ashtabula residents. I applaud the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the City of Ashtabula and its Port, the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency, and the Ohio Department of Natural Resources for their strong partnership on this project and look forward to supporting their efforts as they continue to develop sustainable options for the disposal of dredged material.”
“Restoring the ecosystem of Lake Erie has been a mutual goal for the USACE Buffalo District and the State of Ohio for many years. The Section 204 project in Ashtabula also marks a major milestone for dredging in Ohio. It will demonstrate one potential application for beneficial use of dredged materials – engineering with nature to expand fish habitat and improve the quality of life for local residents. It is our hope that other Ohio harbors and communities will join us and our partners in identifying similar opportunities across the state,” said LTC Eli Adams, USACE Buffalo District Commander. “This project’s success is because of the hard work of the USACE, OEPA, ODNR, and Ashtabula City Port Authority partnership working together to combine resources and authorities, delivering a healthier Lake Erie.”
“This dredge material repurposed-for-wetlands project is a win-win for the Ashtabula area and our entire state,” Ohio EPA Director Laurie A. Stevenson said. “We are grateful to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for keeping the project on schedule to provide additional habitat benefits on Lake Erie out of this dredge material, and appreciate all the contractors who submitted bids and have an interest in helping us accomplish great things here in Ohio.”
“Working in partnership with the Port of Ashtabula, Ohio EPA, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the Ohio Department of Natural Resources is pleased to support this wetland creation project that will protect Lake Erie water quality and provide enhanced recreational opportunities for the residents of northeast Ohio,” said Dr. Scudder Mackey, Chief, ODNR Office of Coastal Management.
“The Ashtabula City Port Authority is excited that the Harbor's 204 Project has entered its next phase. We look forward to the Corps' progress as 2021 unfolds,” said Eddy Eckart, consultant for Ashtabula City Port Authority.
The beneficial use of dredged material project at Ashtabula is being conducted under the Corps of Engineers Continuing Authority Program Section 204 authority and is cost shared 65% federal and 35% non-federal. When the decade-long project is completed, it will create approximately 16.5 acres of pristine wetland habitat.