A project to remove a hazardous silt-build up in Throggs Neck’s Hammond Cove now has firmed-up work dates.
The study phase for the dredging of a waterway bottleneck has been pegged for this summer to fall period with dredging planned for a three to eight week time span from the late fall of 2017 to early spring of 2018.
The same project update from the NYC City Economic Development Corporation and Department of Environmental Conservation dated August 2017 states that the dredging is subject to regulatory approval and will depend on weather and project’s final size.
Senator Jeff Klein, who secured $1.1 million in state funding for the study and dredging, hailed the development.
“The latest update on the Hammond Cove dredging project indicates we’re continuing to move in the right direction,” said Klein. “The NYC (EDC) has now presented us with estimated timelines and an approximate rendering of the area to be dredged.”
Dredging Hammond Cove has been a Community Board 10 capital budget request for years.
Pat Devine, a former CB 10 member for four decades, said that the project was brought to the senator’s attention at a house party for Klein he hosted for the Silver Beach community four years ago.
Devine said that a challenge was getting city and state agencies on board, and the funding in place. It required a great deal of persistence.
“We want to keep them tracked and keep them on their word that the completion of the dredging will be for the 2018 boating season,” said Devine.
“The surrounding communities are excited and cannot wait for this to happen,” said Devine. “It will reduce flooding in that area and give access for emergency boating vehicles.”
At the lowest tides, it is difficult for larger boats to make it through a narrowing of the cove near the Locust Point Yacht Club, with only a two to three foot draft, or clearance for the boat’s hulls, said Devine.
When the work is complete, at lowest tide there would be a ten-foot draft, said Devine.
Justin Dambinskas, proprietor of Hammonds Cove Marina, said that he was happy to get something in writing from EDC, saying he felt like he was ‘crying wolf’ when speaking about the planned project.
“We think that three to eight weeks are ambiguous, but as long as the work is done by March, we are okay with it,” said Dambinskas.
Both Devine and Dambinskas thanked the senator for promoting and funding the project.
EDC is involved in the dredging, stated an agency spokeswoman, because the process requires a municipal authority receive the funding allocation.
The agency is coordinating the project with state agencies, including the NYS Department of State, because this is required to receive dredging permits, she said.
Locust Point community leader Jim McQuade said that runoff from the Throgs Neck Bridge is piped into shallow water, creating silt nearby.
He believes some of this runoff resulted in the silting of Hammond Cove, and he and his neighbors are calling for an environmental study of the waters off Locust Point, which he said are experiencing severe silting.