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Corps of Engineers Releases Chicago Dredged Material Management Plan Environmental Assessment

Posted on June 11, 2015

The US Army Corps of Engineers has released for public comment the ‘Chicago Area Waterways Dredged Material Management Plan and Integrated Environmental Assessment.

The plan contains recommendations for managing material dredged from the Calumet Harbour and River and the Calumet-Sag Channel for the next twenty-five years.

Calumet Harbour and River is located on Lake Michigan in the City of Chicago, Illinois. Maintenance dredging of the channel produces an average yearly volume of approximately 50,000 cubic yards of material. The downstream Calumet-Sag Channel, part of the Illinois Waterway, includes both the Calumet-Sag and a portion of the Little Calumet River. Approximately 30,000 cubic yards of sediment is expected to be dredged from the Calumet-Sag Channel over the next 25 years. Levels of metals, PCBs and PAHs are sufficiently high to preclude unconfined placement of the river and channel sediment.

Currently, dredged sediment is placed in the Chicago Area Confined Disposal Facility (CDF), located at the mouth of the Calumet River. The CDF, which was built in 1984, is nearly at capacity, creating the need for a management plan for the material generated through ongoing maintenance dredging.

The proposed plan would include construction of a dredged material disposal facility on a currently vacant portion of the former Republic Steel Manufacturing Complex, located along the Calumet River at 122nd Street and Carondolet Avenue in Chicago, and closure of the existing Chicago Area CDF. Details about the project and a copy of the report can be found at .

The Chicago Area Waterway System is an important link in the US national and regional water transportation network, connecting the Great Lakes deep-draft navigation system with the Illinois Waterway and Mississippi River inland navigation system.

Comments must be received by July 15, 2015 and may be submitted by mail to: US Army Corps of Engineers, Chicago District, 231 S. LaSalle Street, Suite 1500, Chicago, IL 60604, ATTN: Planning Branch; or via e-mail

A public meeting to provide additional information about the report will be held on Monday, June 22, 2015 from 6.00pm to 7.30pm at 10500 S. Ewing Avenue, Chicago, Ill.

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