The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) completed the Phase 1 dredging for the historic project to deepen the Mississippi River Ship Channel (MRSC) to 50 feet on May 7, 2021. The Phase 1 section of the Ship Channel extends from Venice at Mile 13 Above Head of Passes (AHP) to Mile 22 Below Head of Passes (BHP). The USACE uncovered some depth anomalies with two utility pipelines and one cable that cross under the Ship Channel in the area of Venice from Mile 12 AHP to Mile 11 AHP. Due to the information uncovered the USACE is working to verify the depth over these structures in this area before the Ship Channel is officially opened up to a deepened draft (50 Feet). The USACE has actively worked to define the extent of this problem by identifying and contacting the listed utility owners and has requested updated surveys and operational information for each potential obstruction. The USACE is focusing dredging operations on the Crossings Above New Orleans as Southwest Pass is in good condition.
DUSTPAN DREDGES WORKING ON THE CROSSINGS ABOVE NEW ORLEANS:
WALLACE McGEORGE: The industry dustpan dredge WALLACE McGEORGE continues dredging at Granada Crossing (Mile 205 AHP). The dustpan dredge began dredging on the Crossings on May 20, 2021.
HURLEY: The government dustpan dredge HURLEY continues dredging at Alhambra Crossing (Mile 192 AHP). The White Castle Anchorage (Mile 191.1 AHP to Mile 190.4 AHP) is off limits for vessel usage while the HURLEY is dredging at Alhambra Crossing
(Mile 192 AHP). This assignment at Alhambra Crossing is expected to last approximately ten more days. The HURLEY commenced dredging on the Crossings on Wednesday, May 26, 2021.
JADWIN: The government dustpan dredge is expected to commence dredging on the Crossings later this month. The dustpan is presently working on the shallow-draft project at the Bayou Sorrel Lock Forebay.
INDUSTRY HOPPER DREDGES WORKING ON THE CROSSINGS ABOVE NEW ORLEANS:
STUYVEASNT: The industry hopper dredge STUYVESANT (Dutra Group) is now dredging at Belmont Crossing (Mile 154 AHP). The STUYVEASNT is working under Southwest Pass Hopper Dredge Rental Contract #6-2020 that was awarded to the Dutra Group in Fiscal Year 2020 to perform channel maintenance in Fiscal Year 2021. The STUYVESANT worked in Southwest Pass under this contract from March 24, 2021 to May 24, 2021 before starting work on the Crossings. The STUYVESANT began dredging on the Crossings on May 25, 2021.
INDUSTRY HOPPER DREDGES WORKING IN THE AREA OF SOUTHWEST PASS (SWP):
NEWPORT: The industry hopper dredge NEWPORT (Manson Construction) is dredging near the Venice Jump from Mile 10.5 AHP to Mile 10.0 AHP under Southwest Pass Hopper Dredge Rental Contract #7-2020. This contract was awarded to the Manson Construction in Fiscal Year 2020 to perform channel maintenance in Fiscal Year 2021. The NEWPORT began work under this contract on April 3, 2021.
GLENN EDWARDS: The GLENN EDWARDS (Manson Construction) continues to undergo repairs in dry dock. The hopper dredge is expected to return in August (2021) to complete work under Southwest Pass Hopper Dredge Rental Contract #3-2020. This contract was awarded in Fiscal Year 2020 to perform channel maintenance in Fiscal Year 2021. The GLENN EDWARDS began work under this contract on May 7, 2021.
CUTTERHEAD DREDGE(S) IN THE HOPPER DREDGE DISPOSAL AREA (HDDA):
ILLINOIS: The cutterhead dredge ILLINOIS (Great Lakes Dredge and Dock) has removed and beneficially used approximately 7.5 million cubic yards (mcy) of material from the HDDA under Hopper Dredge Disposal Area Cutterhead Rental Contract #1-2019. The contract includes the removal of 10 mcy in the base with options to add an additional 4 mcy. The project is expected to be completed by early 2022. The material is beneficially being used in the West Bay Receiving Area through a submerged dredge pipeline that will have to be removed up completion of the project. The pipeline retrieval will require at least one complete closure on the Ship Channel in the immediate vicinity of the submerged pipeline (Mile 2.0 AHP to Mile 0 – the Head of Passes).
The Carrollton Gauge (New Orleans) reading at 1200 hours today was 9.92 feet with a 24-hour change of + 0.04 feet. The highest crest recorded on the Carrollton Gauge in 2021 was 15.44 feet at 1700 hours on April 16, 2021. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) National Weather Service Extended Streamflow Prediction (28-Day) for the Carrollton Gauge issued today forecasts stages will slowly rise to 10.1 feet on June 16, 2021 and then begin a slow fall to 8.6 feet on July 9 (2021).
The Baton Rouge Gauge reading at 1200 hours today was 27.80 feet with a 24-hour change of + 0.19 feet. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) National Weather Service Extended Streamflow Prediction (28-Day) for the Baton Rouge Gauge issued today predicts forecasts stages will slowly rise to 29.7 feet on June 15, 2021 and then begin a slow fall to 24.9 feet on July 9 (2021).