Corps Seeks Comments on Port of Corpus Christi Channel Deepening

The U. S. Army Corps of Engineers Galveston District has published a public notice requesting public comment for the Port of Corpus Christi Authority’s proposed Channel Deepening Project, for which an Environmental Impact Statement will be prepared.

The proposed Chanel Deepening Project is located within the existing channel bottom of the Corpus Christi Ship Channel (CCSC) starting near the southeast side of Harbor Island, traversing easterly through the Aransas Pass, and extending beyond the currently authorized terminus, an approximate distance of 13.8 miles.  The Port’s stated need for the proposed Chanel Deeping Project is to accommodate transit of fully laden very large crude carriers (VLCCs) that draft approximately 70 feet. The proposed project does not include widening the channel; however, some minor incidental widening of the channel slopes is expected to meet side slope requirements and to maintain the stability of the channel.

The channel deepening project, if approved, would create approximately 46 million cubic yards of new work dredged material. Dredged material judged to be suitable for beneficial use would be used to create several feeder berms in near-shore areas to nourish eroded beach areas, reestablish sand dune areas on San Jose Island that were breached by Hurricane Harvey, restore perimeter portions of placement areas that have experienced erosion, place material in areas adjacent to the interior CCSC that were breached by Hurricane Harvey, and enhance/armor a perimeter berm along Harbor Island that would absorb erosive forces of waves and ship wakes to protect areas of marsh and submerged aquatic vegetation behind the berm. Dredged material judged to be unsuitable for beneficial use would be placed in authorized placement areas.

Any comments received will be considered by the Corps of Engineers to determine whether to issue, modify, condition or deny a permit for this proposal. Comments are used in the preparation of the Environmental Impact Statement, to gauge public interest and to determine the need for a public hearing. Comments may be directed to the Corps of Engineers by electronic mail, or mailed to: U. S. Army Corps of Engineers Galveston District, Attn: Regulatory Division, P. O. Box 1229, Galveston, Texas 77553-1229. The deadline to submit comments is August 30.

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The public notice and project plans may be found on the District Webpage.