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Lewes, Delaware
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December 1, 2006     Cape Gazette
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December 1, 2006
 

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24 - CAPE GAZETTE - Friday, December 1 - Monday, December 4, 2006 Canalfront Park bulkhead reinforcement-underway By Henry J. Evans Jr. Cape Gazette staff StabilizatiOn of the bulkhead at Canalfront Park is moving ahead again after a wait for state and federal permits, engineering changes and obtaining materials delayed construction. Engineer Preston Lee, Canal- front Park construction manager, said initial work on the existing bulkhead began a few weeks ago, but stabilizing it proved more complex than first thought. Because the Lewes-Rehoboth Canal bottom is softer than expected, Lee said the initial design had to be modified. Plans to place riprap - quantities of large stones - against the existing bulkhead were modified because significantly more stone than was first thought would have been needed. Lee said engineers have changed plans and are now using precast concrete mattresses that would spread the weight load more evenly on the canal bottom. He said sandbags would be placed atop the concrete pads and stone will be placed on top of the sand- bags. "It's a better design," Lee said. He said the change required approval by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control for work to proceed. "It took a little while to get that accomplished, so major work was held up until then," Lee said Nov. 22. He said the state issued its per- mit a couple of weeks ago, and the Army CorlSs' permit came last week. Installation of the stabiliza- tion system should move quickly, he said Clear and mild weather were a welcome assist as a construction crane operator hoisted, and ground crews positioned compo- nents of the stabilization system Monday, Nov. 27. Sandbags filled on-site will be lowered into place on top of the concrete mattresses. Lee said large stone would then be placed on top of the sandbags to com- plete the bulkhead stabilization. Lee said construction of the park's fishing pier and shelter is complete with the exception of metal roofing for the shelter. He said most of the under- ground utility construction is also finished, with the exception of storm drain construction that will be completed after the bulkhead is stabilized and the area is graded. Electrical conduit and water lines for the marina will soon be installed. He 'said the boardwalk along the park's canal edge is fin- ished. The remaining Section of boardwalk will be built when bulkhead work is complete. Lee said because of the canal's soft bottom, dredging would be required to clean up after the bulk- head fortification. Dredging will take up to a week, he said. Lee said the final step to com- plete the 22-slip marina would be placing floating docks between .piers that have been installed. He said cleanup of the construction site would follow in preparation for filling and grading the area, followed by applying a layer of topsoil. "It will probably be March - late winter or early spring - until we get the seeding done," Lee said. He said because of delays caused by the bulkhead work, contractor George & Lynch of New Castle, is developing a new schedule and will provide an accurate date for completing the marina/fishing pier phase. The City of Lewes is a partner Henry J. Evans Jr. photo A heavy construction crane lifts components of a bulkhead stabilization system into place at the Lewes Canalfront Park construction site. The project was held up for awhile as engi- neers made design changes and obtained new permits. Because the canal's bottom is soft, pre- cast concrete pads are being used as a base instead of rock. ! in development of the $4.9 mil- lion park. The next construction phase includes removal of the boat ramp and vehicle parking lot, located adjacent to the fishing pier and marina. A grassy, sloped, open area will replace the parking lot and boat ramp areas. The original schedule slated work on the replacemeht boat ramp to begin next year at the north end of Pilottown Road adja- cent to the site of the state's planned multiuse facility i Demolition of the existing boat ramp wouldn't begin until the new ramp is in service. Contact Henry J. Evans J at he vans @ capegazette.com. 15% OFF KWIAT stNGE 1907 SIMPLY BRILLIANT* ... the lasting difference 20747 Coastal Highway Rehoboth Beach, DE 19971 302.227.64 i0