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$1M secured to dredge Lake Michigan harbor in St. Joseph

St. Joseph Harbor is shown in a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers aerial photo.

Posted on March 14, 2023

More than $1 million from the Army Corps of Engineers has been secured to ensure the St. Joseph inner harbor will be properly dredged so that shipments of materials for construction work throughout the region can be received, Congressman Bill Huizenga announced.

The Army Corps of Engineers will also be providing an additional $560,000 for repair work for the north pier of the harbor. In total, the federal government is providing $1.67 million for the St. Joseph projects.

Huizenga helped secure the funding as part of the Army Corps of Engineers 2023 work plan, according to his office.

“St. Joseph Harbor is a source of significant economic activity for Southwest Michigan,” Huizenga said in a news release. “This funding will help ensure that St. Joseph Harbor is properly dredged which will allow critical projects, including scheduled work on I-94, to be completed as well as support the lakeshore’s vibrant small business economy during tourist season.”

St. Joseph Harbormaster Mike Moran said he is pleased to hear about this funding.

“Maintaining the harbor for commercial shipping is vital to the economy, not just in Berrien County, but all over the region for various construction and paving projects,” Moran said in the news release.

Keith Rose, President and CEO asphalt and paving company Rieth-Riley Construction Co., expressed gratitude for the funds to help address challenges.

“In all the years that we have dealt with the challenges that the harbor and mother nature bring, this recent effort is by far the most proactive and collaborative effort that we have experienced,” Rose said in the news release.

Berrien County Community Development Director Daniel Fette said officials are delighted to learn that additional harbor maintenance funding has been allocated to assist with the maintenance dredging of the St. Joseph Harbor.

“This additional funding will ensure that anticipated shipments of nearly 600,000 tons of material will be received within the St. Joe Harbor this year.” Fette said. “The delivery of this material is critical to the completion of many construction projects across Southwest Michigan, including the I-94 corridor project in Berrien County.”

Other funding from the Army Corps of Engineers includes $895,000 for the Saugatuck harbor, $610,000 for the South Haven harbor and $570,000 for the Grand Haven harbor.


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