The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) continues working on the historic project to deepen the Mississippi River Ship Channel (MRSC) to 50 feet. The USACE completed dredging with the dustpan dredges on the Crossings Above New Orleans for Fiscal Year 2020 on January 9, 2021.
MISSISSIPPI RIVER SHIP CHANNEL DEEPENING PHASE 1:
The three cutterhead dredges and the hopper dredge listed below continue dredging on their contractual deepening assignments for Phase 1 of the MRSC deepening. The USACE intends to deepen the Ship Channel from Venice to the Gulf of Mexico (Phase 1) with a total of three dredge contracts, specifically the two cutterhead dredge contracts detailed below and the one for the hopper dredge GLENN EDWARDS (Manson Construction). The USACE recently reported that Phase 1 of the MRSC Deepening to 50 Feet is over fifty percent complete, a diagram with an update on the Phase 1 dredging assignments from Mile 13 Above Head of Passes (AHP) to Mile 22 Below Head of Passes (BHP) is attached to this document. The USACE expects to complete the deepening project in four phases to the upper end of the MRSC at Mile 233.8 AHP (Baton Rouge).
CUTTERHEAD DREDGES WORKING ON DEEPENING IN SOUTHWEST PASS:
Weeks Marine continues responding to Southwest Pass Cutterhead Dredge Rental Contract #1-2020 with the two cutterhead dredges listed below.
CAPTAIN FRANK: The industry cutterhead dredge CAPTAIN FRANK (Weeks Marine) officially commenced the historic project to deepen the Mississippi River Ship Channel to 50 feet on
September 11, 2020. The CAPTAIN FRANK is currently dredging at Mile 2.96 BHP on assignment from Mile 2.0 BHP to Mile 6.0 BHP on the eastern side of the Ship Channel. The CAPTAIN FRANK recently completed the assignment from Mile 13 BHP to Mile 18 BHP on the eastern side of the Ship Channel.
E.W. ELLEFSEN: The industry cutterhead dredge E.W. ELLEFSEN (Weeks Marine) is presently working at Mile 7.17 BHP dredging on assignment from Mile 6.0 BHP to Mile 9.0 BHP on the western side of the Ship Channel. The E.W. ELLEFSEN started dredging on the deepening project on November 18, 2020.
ROBERT M. WHITE: The ROBERT M. WHITE (Manson Construction) is dredging at Mile 10.0 BHP on assignment from Mile 9.0 BHP to Mile 13.0 BHP on the eastern of the channel. The cutterhead is working under Southwest Pass Cutterhead Dredge Rental Contract #2-2020 for the Ship Channel deepening that was awarded to Manson Construction on September 8, 2020.
HOPPER DREDGES WORKING ON DEEPENING IN THE AREA OF SOUTHWEST PASS:
GLENN EDWARDS: The GLENN EDWARDS (Manson Construction) is dredging on an assignment under Southwest Pass Hopper Dredge Rental Contract #9-2020 on the deepening project from Mile 2.0 AHP to Mile 0 (Head of Passes) on the eastern side of the Ship Channel. The GLENN EDWARDS is presently dredging at Mile 1.0 AHP and will complete the final portions of the Ship Channel deepening project. The hopper dredge is also under contract for Fiscal Year 2021 channel maintenance and will be moved between the two contracts by the MVN dependent upon channel conditions. The GLENN EDWARDS began dredging on the deepening project in Southwest Pass on January 14, 2021.
CUTTERHEAD DREDGE(S) IN THE HOPPER DREDGE DISPOSAL AREA (HDDA):
ILLINOIS: The cutterhead dredge ILLINOIS (Great Lakes Dredge and Dock) continues dredging in the HDDA under Hopper Dredge Disposal Area Cutterhead Rental Contract #1-2019. The installation of a submerged dredge pipeline to place the removed dredge material in the West Bay Receiving Area was completed on January 19, 2021. The pipeline crosses the Ship Channel between Mile 1.4 AHP to Mile 1.2 AHP from the eastern side of the channel into the West Bay. The contract includes the removal of 10 million cubic yards (mcy) in the base with options to add an additional 4 mcy.
The ILLINOIS commenced dredging in the HDDA on January 27, 2021. The project is expected to be completed late this year (2021). The submerged pipeline will have to be removed upon completion and the retrieval will require at least one complete channel closure in the immediate vicinity (Mile 2.0 AHP to Mile 0 – the Head of Passes).
The Carrollton Gauge (New Orleans) reading at 1100 hours today was 7.33 feet with a 24-hour change of + 0.24 feet. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) National Weather Service Extended Streamflow Prediction (28-Day) for the Carrollton Gauge issued today predicts stages cresting at 8.1 feet on February 12, 2021 and then staying steady for a few days before falling to 5.7 feet on March 8, 2021.
The Baton Rouge Gauge reading at 1200 hours today was 24.29 feet with a 24-hour change of + 0.76 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 stages rising to 24.2 feet on February 12, 2021 and then beginning a steady fall to 19.6 feet on February 26, 2021.