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Corps of Engineers to begin dredging, beach nourishment in South Haven

Posted on August 22, 2022

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will place South Haven harbor dredge material near-shore to nourish South Beach starting next week.

Sampling results confirm the proposed outer harbor dredge material is suitable for beneficial reuse as nourishment material. About 18,000 cubic yards of material from the federal navigation channel will be placed south of the South Pier in South Haven, Michigan.

“We understand the eroded area in front of the water treatment plant may seem the logical placement site, however, we do not have National Environmental Policy Act approval to place there this year,” said Elizabeth Newell Wilkinson Grand Haven Resident Engineer. “We are hard at work on the required Environmental Assessment to evaluate whether or not we will be able to place material there next year and are hopeful in the results.”

South Beach is an accretion zone that accumulates more sand because of changes to natural sand migration caused by the federal harbor structures.

“We will apply for a permit with Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy to place material on the beach if we demonstrate the beach is eroding,” said Wilkinson.

The King Co., Inc. of Holland, Michigan will begin hydraulically dredging in South Haven by August 26 and will be on site for approximately two weeks.

The public should remain clear of dredging and placement areas. Fencing and signs will be posted at the nearshore placement area for this project.

South Haven dredging was originally scheduled to take place earlier in the season, but Muskegon Harbor shoaling caused major impacts to commercial navigation and crews were directed there first.

Dredging took place earlier this season in Holland and Grand Haven, is currently taking place in Muskegon and Manistee and will be starting soon in St. Joseph and South Haven. The King Co. will dredge nearly 250,000 cubic yards in total from the six West-Michigan locations.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Detroit District, maintains a navigation system of 81 harbors including the channels joining lakes Superior, Michigan, Huron, St. Clair and Erie.

The Detroit District provides vital public engineering services in peace and war to secure our Nation, protect the environment, energize our economy and reduce risks from natural disasters.

For more details, contact Detroit District Public Affairs Specialist Emily Schaefer, 313-226-4681.


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