Callan Marine will receive approximately $102.9 million to complete dredging on the final stretch of the project — the Inner Harbor reach. With the final contract, the entire project will beneficially use roughly five million cubic yards of dredged material.
“Through extensive resource agency coordination, cooperation with our non-federal sponsor — the Port of Corpus Christi — a close relationship with the Texas General Land Office and a tremendous partnership with the Coastal Bend Bays and Estuaries program, about five million cubic yards of dredged material will be turned into almost 1,000 acres of something useful while leaving capacity in upland placement areas for routine maintenance dredging disposal,” said Lisa Finn, SWG’s Environmental Program Manager for Operations.
The overall channel improvement project would combat erosion within the channel by providing 395 acres of sacrificial erosion protection along with the construction of a 2,000-foot breakwater — to tie into a currently planned 4,000-foot breakwater — in the Nueces Delta. The Nueces Delta is currently eroding at a rate of about 8.2 feet per year, Finn said.
The project also aims to nourish degraded habitats by converting 206 acres of open water in an estuarine marsh. According to Finn, an additional 120 acres of intertidal living shoreline will be created to provide shoreline protection and prevent road overtopping. The CCSCIP will also create another 200 acres of an industrial use site for local economic and commercial entities.
“With this project, the Galveston District makes great strides toward the Chief of Engineers’ vision to increase beneficial use of dredged material,” said Col. Rhett Blackmon, SWG’s District Commander.
“This is one of the largest beneficial use projects the district has ever constructed,” said Chris Frabotta, SWG’s Operations Chief. “That much dredged material would fill up the Astrodome more than three times.”
The project will improve approximately 11.9 miles of the associated shipping channel, effectively widening the channel from 400 feet to 530 feet and deepening it from 47 feet to 54 feet.