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Chief of Engineers Lt. Gen. Todd Semonite signs Chief’s Report for the New Haven Harbor Navigation Improvement Project

Published May 12, 2020

CONCORD, Mass. – Lt. Gen. Todd T. Semonite, USACE Commanding General and 54th U.S. Army Chief of Engineers, on May 7 signed the New Haven Harbor Navigation Improvement Project Chief's Report.


The existing New Haven Harbor deep draft ship channel, turning basin, and maneuvering area are currently authorized at a depth of -35 feet at mean lower low water (MLLW). Deeper and wider channels, maneuvering area, and turning basin are needed to increase the navigation efficiency and safety of New Haven Harbor. To reach the terminals, larger ships must lighter outside the breakwaters and/or experience delays while waiting for favorable tide conditions, or both.  


The recommended project includes deepening the main ship channel, maneuvering area, and turning basin from -35 to -40 feet MLLW, extending the entrance channel seaward to allow for the deepening, widening the turning basin to the north 200 feet, widening the inner channel from 400 to 500 feet; widening the entrance channel from 500 to 600 feet; and widening the channel bend near the East Breakwater to 800 feet.


Dredged material from the project will be placed at several open water sites within the harbor and Long Island Sound. These open water disposal sites include: Morris Cove borrow pit, an oyster habitat creation site near the East Breakwater, West River Borrow pit, rock placement north of the West Breakwater (rock reef habitat creation); and the Central Long Island Sound Disposal Site (CLDS). 


The recommended plan also includes a beneficial disposal method beyond the least cost method. A portion of the dredged material that would otherwise have been placed at CLDS will be used in the harbor to create a 58-acre salt marsh at Sandy Point in West Haven, Connecticut.   


The Connecticut Port Authority is the non-Federal sponsor for the project. The estimated project first cost of the Recommended Plan, which includes beneficial use of dredge material to create the salt marsh, is $72,311,000. The Connecticut Port Authority would provide $18,822,000 of that cost plus an additional 10% of the general navigation feature over 30 years.


More information on the New Haven Harbor Navigation Improvement Project is available at the District website at: http://www.nae.usace.army.mil/Missions/Projects-Topics/New-Haven-Harbor/.


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Tim Dugan

Release no. 20-041