Bal Harbor Beach to benefit from problematic shoal!
Jacksonville, Fla. – A U.S. Army Corps of Engineers operations and maintenance dredging project within the Intracoastal Waterway (IWW) Bakers Haulover area will start as early as Nov. 18.
“The Bakers Haulover reach is one of the top three shoaling areas along the entire IWW, requiring dredging roughly every two years. With Miami Dade County beaches being highly erosive and in constant need of sand, we have an opportunity to dredge the IWW and put sand on eroded beaches at no cost to the local communities,” said Corps’ IWW Project Manager Shelley Trulock.
Federally authorized channels are routinely maintained for navigational purposes. The IWW within this area is authorized at 10 feet deep by 125 feet wide.
The Corps awarded a nearly $1.6 million contract to Cavache, Inc. of Pompano Beach, Fla., Sept. 19, with funding obtained due to waterway impacts from the passage of Hurricane Matthew in October 2016. Channel surveys showed approximately 50,000 cubic yards of material within the Federal channel that is causing concerns for maintaining a safe navigable channel within this highly utilized reach of the IWW.
“The Corps and Florida Inland Navigation District (FIND) are 100 percent committed to proactively maintaining authorized depths of the IWW, which helps ensure safe conditions for all those that conduct boating activities within one of Florida’s most valued resources,” said FIND Executive Director Mark Crosley. The FIND is the local sponsor for the project.
Cavache will place dredged material on Bal Harbor beach, starting about 1,000 feet south of the inlet and running another 1,000 feet south between monuments R28 and R29. Cavache will create pedestrian crossovers at existing beach access points running from the inlet, south to the placement area. The cross-overs are built over the pipeline so the public can access the shoreline outside the active construction area.
“The Contractor will ensure beach access is maintained along this popular public beach during construction,” Trulock said.
Mobilization activities will start on or around Nov. 13 along the beach with mobilization of the actual dredge to the area as early as Nov. 10. Residents and visitors can look to the IWW and see the Dredge Maya Caelyn and tugboats Stacey or Big John. Dredging operations are anticipated to run from Nov. 18 through January 2018. Cavache will conduct seabird and turtle monitoring, as well as turbidity monitoring throughout construction.
Sand placement may require temporary beach closures for construction activities to help protect the public and construction workers. Pipeline discharge, bulldozers and other construction operations are anticipated to operate 24 hours daily.
Residents adjacent to the construction area may experience noise that is incidental to construction such as back-up alarms and engine noise. Please note that bulldozer back-up alarms in the construction area cannot be turned off. The alarms are a safety device required by federal law to protect people from getting hit by machinery when the driver is unable to see directly behind the equipment.
“We ask the public to have patience with the temporary construction and to use caution in the work areas at all times,” Trulock said.
Jacksonville District has relocated millions of cubic yards of sand from Florida harbors, inlets and waterways as part of its navigation program. This work provides significant aid to navigation and, when suitable, it also benefits local beaches with sand nourishment, providing important storm damage protection and restoring beach wildlife habitat.