International Dredging Review

International Dredging Review


The Corps of Engineers dredge Murden arrived in Ocean City Maryland on April 6 for the semiannual dredging of the ebb shoals near the Inlet and finish a quick fix completed by its sister dredge Currituck in March.

From March 6-12 the Currituck worked around the clock to dredge the inlet after Winter Storm Jonas exacerbated the usual shoaling making the channel almost impassable. The Currituck removed about 13500 cubic yards of material and beneficially placed it on the north end of Assateague Island—3500 more than the Corps originally estimated would have to be removed.

The Murden was expected to remove another 5000 cubic yards from the Inlet channel itself and about 30000 cubic yards overall from in and around the Inlet.

The current federally authorized channel depth is 10 feet but plans are in the works to increase that to between 14 and 16 feet. The Corps says it is working with local authorities on the plan.


Southwind Construction recently completed dredging work at Breach Inlet and Jeremy Creek in South Carolina two critical reaching in the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway (AIWW). The contractor used the Wilco an 18-inch cutterhead dredge to perform work for the Charleston District.


Great Lakes Dredge & Dock Company’s hydraulic dredge Dodge Island operates in the distance as clean sand is deposited onto Town Neck Beach in Sandwich Massa-chusetts. (Photos provided by the New England District by John MacPherson)

Breach Inlet is considered one of the main thoroughfares of commercial boaters and had become treacherously shallow. The dredging project restored a 10-foot depth to this area.

Jeremy Creek is utilized by the commercial seafood industry that supplies our local restaurants with fresh catches which is an important part of the local economy. Dredging the reach to eight feet allowed the industry to keep thriving.

The District partnered with Charleston County to fund this project. The County paid $500000 of the $2.6 million cost to remove 250000 cubic yards of material from Breach Inlet and 110000 cubic yards from Jeremy Creek. That is roughly equivalent to 25000 dump trucks of material taken out of Breach Inlet and 11000 dump trucks out of Jeremy Creek. The dredged material was placed in Charleston District disposal sites close to each area.‚Äč


At the request of the cities of Saco and Biddeford the New England Engineer District announced March 20 that it is proposing maintenance dredging of portions of the Saco River Federal Navigation Project in Saco and Biddeford Maine.

The Congressionally authorized federal navigation project provides for a channel -8 feet mean lower low water (MLLW) extending approximately six miles from Saco Bay to a 10-acre maneuvering basin (-6 feet MLLW) at Factory Island in the vicinity of downtown Saco and Biddeford. Channel width varies from 100 to 200 feet along the length of the river. Three anchorage areas (-6 feet MLLW) in the southern portion of the river provide a total of 13.5 acres of anchorage.

“The proposed work involves dredging approximately 150000 cubic yards of sand from an area of roughly 77 acres to restore the Federal navigation project to authorized dimensions” said project manager Craig Martin of the New England District’s Programs/Project Management Division. The dredged material includes about 100000 cubic yards in the lower reaches and 50000 cubic yards in the upper reaches of the Federal navigation project.


 The dredge Dodge Island operates in the Cape Cod Canal. 

A pipeline cutterhead dredge or a mechanical dredge will be used to remove all shoals from the lower reach of the Saco River FNP. If the cutterhead pipeline dredge is used the material will be beneficially placed on Camp Ellis Beach in Saco for direct beach nourishment. If a mechanical dredge is used the material will be placed in the nearshore environment off of Camp Ellis Beach that will serve as a potential sand source for the erosional areas of the beach. This work will take approximately 2.5 to 3.5 months to complete during the fall and winter months (November 15 through March 31).

The upper reach of the Saco River FNP will be dredged with either a government-owned special purpose hopper dredge or a mechanical bucket dredge. The dredged material will be placed in either the previously-used naturally deep in-river placement site between Hills Point and Thunder Island in the Saco River channel or a previously used nearshore site off of Camp Ellis as a potential sand source for the erosional areas of the beach.

The work for this area will take approximately 2 months to complete during the fall and winter months (November 15 to March 31).


The Philadelphia Engineer District released a draft feasibility report April 1 on the investigation of flood risk management and ecosystem restoration opportunities in Livingston Manor New York.

The report recommends widening the Little  Beaver Kill in the downtown area near the Main Street Bridge and stabilizing a one-mile stretch of the Little Beaver Kill. That stretch extends upstream from the Main Street Bridge to the old airport property.

The study identified these steps as the most feasible approach to reduce frequently recurring flood damages of the community. The community has been subject to this type of periodic flooding for more than a century.

The draft report has been posted on the websites of the Army Corps’ Philadelphia District and the Town of Rockland. Copies of the report are also available for viewing at the Livingston Manor Town Hall and the Sullivan County Planning Department in Monticello New York. Members of the public environmental and other groups and government agencies are invited to comment. The public comment period will end May 1 2016.

The report is the result of a lengthy study conducted by the Corps of Engineers and costshared with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. Other key partners on the study were Sullivan County Open Space Institute and the Town of Rockland.

Alternatives that were considered involved streams other than the Little Beaver Kill. The recommended plan is believed to (1) have the best potential to reduce flood risk (2) provide the best return on the government investment and (3) have the most support within the community.

After input from the public and other agencies the project will move into the design and build phase which is subject to the availability of funding. The cost of the project would be cost shared on a 65/35 percent basis between the federal government and the non-federal partner NYSDEC.


Beaches in Holland and St. Joseph Michigan will get about 110000 cubic yards of sand this year from two Lake Michigan harbors that will be dredged by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

MCM Marine Inc. in Sault Ste. Marie has been contracted to dredge the harbors in Holland and St. Joseph for $621000. Its plans call for 65000 cubic yards to be dredged out the Holland Channel in April and deposited along a 2000-foot area south of the breakwater. In May MCM will dredge 52000 cubic yards out of the St. Joseph harbor and deposit it along a 1400-foot area south if its breakwater.


The maintenance and advance maintenance dredging of the Cape Cod Canal and the sand placement onto Town Neck Beach in Sandwich Massachusetts was completed January 30 the New England Engineer District announced on February 2.

About 130000 cubic yards of sand was dredged from six areas in the authorized 32-foot deep by 500-foot-wide main ship channel and the 25-foot deep East Mooring Basin portions of the Canal.

“Shoaling in the main ship channel consists of large wave formations” said project manager Bill Kavanaugh. “These formations cause draft restrictions tidal delays and hazardous conditions for deepdraft commercial vessels transiting the canal.”

The Cape Cod Canal is a toll-free opento-all waterway that connects Buzzards Bay and Cape Cod Bay. The project is used by both commercial and recreational vessels and eliminates the need to transit around Cape Cod a distance of approximately 135 miles and a more hazardous route.

The District’s contractor Great Lakes Dredge and Dock Company LLC of Oak Brook Illinois used the Dodge Island a hydraulic hopper dredge with pump out capability and ancillary equipment necessary for direct beach placement of the dredged material. The contractor pumped the material directly on the 2500-foot-long eroded section of Town Neck Beach.

Originally scheduled to take two to three months to complete the entire dredging and sand placement only took two and a half weeks. In addition to adding sand to the beach the New England District and its contractor added dune grass plantings.

The town of Sandwich provided $2957900 in funding to place the sandy material directly onto the beach and for dune grass plantings.