Bay channel dredging is latest in N.J.’s safe navigation initiative

U.S. Army Corps file photo.

U.S. Army Corps file photo.

Crews will soon begin dredging channels in Ocean County to ensure safe navigation, the latest in a series of projects that began in 2014, state officials announced.

The work in the northern Barnegat Bay area, set to begin on Oct. 22 and continue through Dec. 31, is part of a $16 million project that improves conditions in state channels in the Barnegat Bay, according to the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection news release.

The state’s contractor, H&L Contracting, will dredge shoals, or shallow areas, in the Upper Metedeconk River Channel, Green Cove Channel, Beaver Damn Creek North and South, Bay Head Channel, Winter Yacht Basin, Kettle Creek-Sailors Quay, and Kettle Creek.

All channels were “severely impacted, creating shoals and limiting navigation, by Superstorm Sandy,” the release states.

Crews will mechanically dredge approximately 180,000 cubic yards of sediment from the channels and transport the spoils on a barge to a “dredge hole” off Mantoloking’s Bayside Park.

The sediment will be capped with high sand content material, which will restore the area and promote the development of submerged aquatic vegetation, according to state officials.

In recent years, among other areas, the state has dredged portions of the Manasquan River, Absecon Inlet, Hereford Inlet, Little Egg Inlet, Barnegat Inlet, Cape May Harbor, and other areas within the Barnegat Bay.

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