Crews playing catchup on Marina project

Crews with Superior Seawalls out of Rock Island work to pull sediment out of the marina in preparation for docks that are arriving April 1. Photo by Chuck Vandenberg/PCC

Superior running two crews and three rigs trying to get ready for docks

BY CHUCK VANDENBERG
PCC EDITOR

FORT MADISON – Construction crews on the city’s marina project are behind schedule and working full crews to get caught up before docks are expected around the first of April.

Crews from Superior Seawalls and Docks out of Rock Island were working in three different locations inside the city’s stripped-down marina on Tuesday afternoon.

Fort Madison Public Works Director Mark Bousselot said he’s seen workers on site on Sundays and late into the evening working with lights.

The extra work is due to the dredging falling behind a contract deadline. Right now the city’s working with a completion date of March 1 after a change order extended the deadline to that date.

He said the contract is in three parts with accretion removal, the jetty work, and the dredging.

“A change order moved the date out to March 1 because they were running a bit behind so we extended it for them,” Bousselot said.

“The accretion removal’s been completed, but we’re still working on completing the jetty, and the dredging. We extended the contract to March and here we are at March 23. They ran into some difficulties, but they have two hydraulic dredges and an excavator and you can see them running full capacity.”

Workers continue to work on the marina wall up against the north and west side of the marina that then transitions into the jetty wall extending out into the river.

Workers with DeLong Construction ran rip-rap, or large rock, down the jetty wall that creates the exterior base of the jetty wall slopes. The height of the jetty wall at completion will be out of the 500-year floodplain.

Bousselot said the permanent docks should be arriving on April 1, just 10 days from now.

He said the city tried to bring a boat in to measure the grade of the silt in the marina – called a bathymetric survey, but the boat struggled getting some of the readings which indicated there was still some work to be done.

“The goal of that bathymetric survey was to indicate where the contractor needs to focus so that way we can make sure we’re good for the future A or B dock,” he said,

Bousselot said the city could decide to pursue liquidation damages due to the lateness of the project. Damages are assessed per day the contract work runs past the agreed upon completion date.

“When we look here and see Superior going, they’re running two crews and two dredges, and an excavation crew,” he said. “They got the people down here and they’re saying they’re throwing everything that have at it.”

Bousselot said you can see on the rail camera that crew are on site into the later evening hours trying to get the work caught up.

The silt, or sediment being pulled up from the marina dredging is being pumped into a retention lagoon built on the park’s west side. The sediment will settle and the remaining water will flow out through “french drains” made of rock in the bottom of the lagoons. The sediment that remains will create a higher ground level taking it out of the 100-year floodplain as well.

When the retention soil that was used to create the retention lagoons is pushed in, in about nine months to a year, the area will be leveled off and it as well will then be raised out of the 100-year flood plain.

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