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2 harbors in Orleans picked for dredging by state

Staff Reports Posted 12 February 2020 at 12:36 pm

Johnson Creek, Oak Orchard among 20 channels to get attention

File photo by Tom Rivers – A boat passes through the Oak Orchard Harbor. Sediment builds up in the channel which can make it difficult for larger boats to use the harbor.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced today that 20 harbors on the southshore of Lake Ontario will be dredged, including Johnson Creek in Carlton near Lakeside Beach State Park and the Oak Orchard Harbor at Point Breeze.

The Oak Orchard Harbor dredging is scheduled to start in June 2021 and the Johnson Creek Harbor will get attention in July 2021.

The $15 million regional dredging initiative is part of the State’s $300 million effort to repair and build resiliency in communities recovering from damage caused by high water levels and flooding.

The governor made the announcement during a stop at Sandy Pond in Oswego County, where a $600,000 REDI award for the North Sandy Pond Resiliency Project will help the Town of Sandy Creek strengthen the barrier bar dividing Sandy Pond and Lake Ontario. The next round of dredging to commence at Blind Sodus Bay, Wayne County, in April, Cuomo said.

“New Yorkers living and working along the shorelines of Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River are still reeling from last year’s record flooding that devastated their communities,” Cuomo said.

The full lists of harbors to be dredged includes:

Orleans County: Oak Orchard Harbor, Johnson Creek

Niagara County: Wilson, Olcott Harbor

Monroe County: Sandy Creek, Braddock Bay, Long Pond Outlet, Irondequoit Bay

Oswego County: Sandy Pond Inlet, Salmon River/Port Ontario

Wayne County: Port Bay, Blind Sodus Bay, Bear Creek Harbor, Pultneyville, East Bay

Cayuga County:  Little Sodus Bay

Jefferson County: Clayton French Creek Marina, Henderson “The Cut”

St. Lawrence County: Ogdensburg “City Front Channel,” Morristown Navigation Channel

The first REDI project completed is at Mexico Point State Park in Oswego County where record-high water levels at Lake Ontario in 2017 and again in 2019 caused devastating damage to the shoreline.

In just four weeks, 435 linear feet of shoreline was stabilized with the placement of 3,200 tons of stone. The project, which was completed ahead of schedule on Feb. 6, will preserve public access to Lake Ontario at Mexico Point Park and protect the local economy through the continued attraction of visitors.

At a Resiliency and Economic Development Initiative Conference in Albany in November 2019, Cuomo introduced the $15 million Regional Dredging Project to the representatives of communities slated to receive REDI grants, letting them know that later that month field teams would be identifying areas to be dredged and developing a timeline for implementation.

Each dredging project is targeted to be complete no more than four months from its start date, with dredging expected to commence in:

• April 2020 at Blind Sodus Bay

• September 2020 at East Bay and North Sandy Pond Inlet

• October 2020 at Braddock Bay, Pultneyville and Little Sodus Bay

• April 2021 at Sandy Creek

• June 2021 at Olcott Harbor, Oak Orchard Harbor and Wilson

• July 2021 at Irondequoit Bay, Long Pond Outlet, Bear Creek Harbor, Henderson “The Cut,” Johnson Creek, Salmon River/Port Ontario, Ogdensburg “City Front” Channel, Morristown Navigation Channel and Clayton French Creek Marine.

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