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Corps of Engineers proposes maintenance dredging of Wellfleet Harbor Federal navigation project in Wellfleet

Published Dec. 20, 2017

CONCORD, Mass. – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, New England District plans to perform maintenance dredging of the Wellfleet Harbor Federal navigation project in Wellfleet, Mass. The town of Wellfleet is the local sponsor.


The congressionally authorized project provides for a channel measuring 10 feet below mean lower low water (MLLW), by 125 feet wide, stemming from the open waters of Cape Cod Bay to the town’s landing in Wellfleet Harbor, including a 10-foot deep anchorage basin, 800 feet by 500 feet, at the head of the channel. Wellfleet Harbor serves as a natural harbor for commercial fishing and charter boats, and offers an excellent marina and facilities to accommodate tourists, vacationers, pleasure boaters and recreational water users.


“Natural shoaling processes in the 10-foot deep entrance channel and the 10-foot deep anchorage have reduced available depths, creating navigational hazards at lower tidal stages,” said Project Manager Craig Martin of the Corps’ New England District, Programs/Project Management Division in Concord, Mass. “The proposed work involves the maintenance dredging of about 160,000 cubic yards of material from the authorized project and will restore the entrance channel and the anchorage to their authorized dimensions.”


Dredging will be performed by mechanical dredge and the dredged material will be brought to the Cape Cod Bay Disposal Site, about 8 miles west of the harbor. The work will take place over a 4-month period between September and December in the year or years in which funds become available. Maintenance dredging of the Wellfleet Harbor FNP was last performed in 1995 when approximately 111,000 cubic yards of material were removed and brought to the Cape Cod Bay Disposal Site.


The proposed work is being coordinated with: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; National Marine Fisheries Service; Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection; Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management; Massachusetts Historic Preservation Office; Massachusetts Board of Underwater Archaeological Resources; Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe; Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head (Aquinnah); the town of Wellfleet town administrator; and town harbormaster. An Environmental Assessment is being prepared and will be available for review.


The public notice, with more detailed information, is available for review on the Corps website at http://www.nae.usace.army.mil/Missions/Navigation/Public-Notices/. Public comments on this proposed dredging work should be forwarded no later than Jan. 18, 2018 to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, New England District, Programs/Project Management Division (ATTN: Mr. Craig Martin), 696 Virginia Road, Concord, MA 01742-2751 or by email to nae-pn-nav@usace.army.mil.

Tim Dugan

Release no. 17-137