Salisbury, Md. --
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Baltimore District, is hosting a virtual public meeting April 14 from 6 – 8 p.m. to provide information and solicit input on the upcoming Wicomico River maintenance dredging and placement site location at the Deal Island Wildlife Management Area (WMA). The meeting can be accessed via WebEx or phone.
This meeting will provide stakeholders and the public the opportunity to learn more about the continued dredging plan, cycle and timeline, as well as information on the Deal Island WMA placement site selection, its environmental and socioeconomic long-term beneficial impacts, and its support to the Eastern Shore and Chesapeake Bay watershed.
“We are excited about the opportunity to couple the execution of our navigation mission with this restoration endeavor,” said Danielle Szimanski, USACE, Wicomico River project manager. “This project will contribute to protecting environmental habitat and expanding public access within the Chesapeake Bay watershed, while also continuing maintenance dredging to ensure vessels can continue safely carrying fuel, materials and agricultural supplies to and from Eastern Shore communities. It’s a win-win.”
USACE will address two contracts planned for award in fiscal 2021. The first contract is for construction of the features to prepare the Deal Island WMA placement site to receive dredged material inflow. This contract will also include vegetation planting. The second contract will be for maintenance dredging of approximately 130,000 cubic yards (cy) of material from the Wicomico River's lower reaches to ensure continued safe navigation along the federal channel.
The dredging is coordinated with several federal, state and local agencies. The material, comprising of mostly silt and sand, will be beneficially placed at the Deal Island WMA, owned by Maryland Department of Natural Resources, to restore approximately 75 acres of wetlands showing heavy signs of degradation and fragmentation. Wicomico County is the non-federal sponsor for the project.
Dredging is scheduled to be completed in early 2022, and vegetation planting on the Deal Island WMA is scheduled to be completed in summer 2023.
The port of Salisbury is the second-highest commercial port in Maryland, consisting primarily of petroleum products and grain. Safe barge passage is crucial to maintaining adequate fuel supplies for the Delmarva Peninsula.
Virtual Public Meeting Details:
Wednesday, April 14, 2021, at 6 p.m.
Meeting number: 199 802 7994
Join by video system
You can also dial 220.127.116.11, and enter your meeting number
+1-844-800-2712 US Toll Free
+1-669-234-1177 US Toll
Access code: 199 802 7994
For more information, please go to the Wicomico River Maintenance Dredging project webpage: https://www.nab.usace.army.mil/Missions/Civil-Works/Wicomico-River-Maintenance-Dredging-Project/