Dec. 14, 2021 - The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Baltimore District, in partnership with the Maryland Department of Transportation Maryland Port Administration (MDOT MPA), the project’s non-federal sponsor, has prepared this draft supplemental Environmental Assessment (sEA) for the Mid-Chesapeake Bay Island Ecosystem Restoration Project (Mid-Bay Island Project) at Barren Island.

The purpose of this notice is to inform the public of the availability of the sEA for their review and comment. USACE and MPA request comments regarding the draft EA by January 18, 2022. 

Click here to view the full public notice from Dec. 14, 2021, regarding the prepared supplemental Environmental Assessment for the Barren Island component of the Mid-Bay Project.

Draft supplemental Environmental Assessment for Barren Island Restoration available for Public Review

USACE and MPA request comments regarding the draft sEA for the Barren Island component of the Mid-Chesapeake Bay Islands Ecosystem Restoration Project by January 18, 2022.  For federal and district agencies receiving a copy of this notice, we request that you provide comments concerning your responsibilities. Comments can be submitted electronically to:  Written comments can be sent to: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Attn: Angie Sowers, Planning Division, 10th Floor, 2 Hopkins Plaza, Baltimore, MD 21201. If you have any questions, please contact Angie Sowers by telephone at (410) 962-7440 or by e-mail at the address above.

'Click' the below to view: 

Mid-Bay Island Project Overview

The Mid-Chesapeake Bay Island Ecosystem Restoration project, often referred to as Mid-Bay Island, is located on the islands of James and Barren in western Dorchester County, Maryland. The project is focused on restoring/expanding island habitat to provide hundreds of acres of wetland and terrestrial habitat for fish, shellfish, reptiles, amphibians, birds, and mammals through the beneficial use of dredged material. 

This will provide direct benefits of improved health, richness, and sustainability to aquatic and wildlife species. In addition, it will provide indirect benefits of navigational safety, education, and passive recreation and perhaps, increased tourism. The conceptual plan for the feasibility study proposes 55 percent wetland and 45 percent upland habitats. Habitat may include submerged aquatic habitat, mudflat, low marsh, high marsh, islands, ponds, channels and upland areas. 

The project develops a long-term strategy for providing viable placement alternatives that meet the dredging needs of the Port of Baltimore while maximizing the use of dredged materials as a beneficial resource. Restoration of island habitat is necessary and valuable to the Chesapeake Bay ecosystem. In the last 150 years, it has been estimated that 10,500 acres of this type of habitat have been lost in the middle-eastern portion of Chesapeake Bay. Remote island habitat is valuable as resting and nesting sites for migratory and shore birds. 

A Chief’s Report signed August 24, 2009 approved the final feasibility report, dated June 2009. The recommended plan consists of constructing environmental restoration projects at both James and Barren Islands.

 James_Isalnd_Recommended_Plan[1].png (3456×2304)  Barren_Island_Design_Plan[1].png (3456×2304)
James Island Recommended Plan Barren Island Design Plan


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