2012-04-06 / Community

Additional Marsh Restoration Contracted

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, New York District awarded a $3,410,000 contract on March 23 to restore Black Wall and Rulers Bar Marsh Islands in Jamaica Bay.

The contract was awarded to Great Lakes Dredge & Dock Company to beneficially use clean sand from the New York-New Jersey Harbor 50 foot deepening project to restore marsh habitat in Jamaica Bay.

Immediately following the completion of the placement of 375,000 cubic yards of Ambrose Channel sand that is being used to restore 42 acres of marsh at Yellow Bar Hassock Marsh Island (expected completion April 2), approximately 250,000 more cubic yards of sand from the Ambrose Channel deepening project will be beneficially used to restore 22 acres of marsh at the Black Wall and 12 acres of marsh at Rulers Bar.

The Marsh Islands Complex is an integral part of Jamaica Bay, targeted for restoration by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, National Park Service (Gateway), New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, New York City Department of Environmental Protection, the National Resources Conservation Service and the New York/New Jersey Harbor Estuary Program.

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation and New York City Department of Environmental Protection are contributing the funds on behalf of the nonfederal sponsor for the Black Wall and Rulers Bar Marsh Islands Restoration Project.

“Our salt marsh island building campaign continues,” said Col. John R. BoulĂ© II, the Army Corps’ New York District Commander. “The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers along with our partners and stakeholders have a rock solid commitment to restore vital habitat within Jamaica Bay, complementing the needs of the environment along with the economic benefits of deepening the Port of New York and New Jersey.”

Restoring salt marshes and coastal wetlands in Jamaica Bay is a critical component of the Comprehensive Restoration Plan for the Hudson Raritan Estuary.

“The Black Wall and Rulers Bar project is just the latest example of the value of having a strong interagency partnership to tackle such large-scale challenges. We are very pleased to be able to provide support for these additional 34 acres of critical salt marsh island habitat,” said Venetia Lannon, Regional Director, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Region 2.

“We are thrilled to commit $900,000 toward the restoration of Black Wall and Ruler Bar Marsh Islands,” said DEP Commissioner Carter Strickland. “By working together, we will continue to improve the ecological health of Jamaica Bay for decades to come.”

It is estimated that approximately 1,400 acres of tidal salt marsh have been lost from the marsh islands since 1924, with the system-wide rate of loss rapidly increasing in recent years.

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