Dredge Now to Return to Ocean City on Sunday or Monday

first_imgA new delay has pushed back the anticipated restart of the south end beach replenishment project by another three or four days.Work is now tentatively scheduled to resume Sunday or Monday (Aug. 9 or 10), Army Corps of Engineers spokesman Richard Pearsall said on Thursday morning.The hopper dredge Liberty Island — a ship that carries new sand to Ocean City from an underwater “borrow area” offshore — is in port in Norfolk, Va., for repairs. It had been scheduled to return to Ocean City today (Thursday, Aug. 6).The repair and testing of a gearbox is taking longer than originally anticipated. Pearsall said more detailed information could come from a work meeting with the contractor scheduled for today.The engine on the Liberty Island died on May 30 and the ship had been in port for seven weeks as it was replaced. It returned to Ocean City on July 20 for what was expected to be the restart of  work. But the dredge broke again on its first test pump.A reduction gearbox had to be repaired, and the Liberty Island returned to port in Norfolk.Work to rebuild eroded beaches between 37th and 59th streets in Ocean City began April 20 and was expected to be complete by mid-July.Two blocks of beach at a time are typically closed when work is in progress, and the delays have kept all Ocean City beaches open through the heart of the summer vacation seasonThe project is now expected to be complete at the end of September.__________Sign up for free OCNJ Daily news updates by email.__________The hopper dredge is a ship that pumps sand into its hold from an offshore borrow area, then travels closer to Ocean City to hook up with a pipeline that feeds the new sand onto the beach.Crews from the Great Lakes Dredge and Dock Company of Oak Brook, Illinois have completed work between 37th Street and 47th Street. The current phase of the project started at 55th Street and was moving toward 47th Street when the dredge died at 52nd Street.When the dredge returns on Aug. 9 or 10, work will resume at 51st Street and move north toward 47th Street.The final phase of the project will start at 55th Street and move southward to 59th Street. It appears that much of that work could now happen after Labor Day.When it’s done, Ocean City will have received approximately 1.6 million cubic yards of sand on approximately 2.5 miles of beach from 37th Street to 59thStreet. The $57 million project includes Strathmere and Sea Isle City, and is funded entirely by the federal government.__________Sign up for OCNJ Daily’s free newsletter and breaking news alerts“Like” us on Facebook A calm and empty ocean on Thursday morning (Aug. 6), a scene that would include a dredge ship on the horizon if beach replenishment project were in progress.last_img

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