Marina work to begin next week

As the planned Phase 1 expansion of South Whidbey Harbor continues, work outside the marina will ramp up as early as Aug. 8.

The equipment and materials will arrive within the next week or so to position the subsurface pilings which will anchor the new dock to the sea floor, according to an update from the harbormaster, Duncan McPhee.

Work performed outside the pilling wall will happen in the daytime mid-week and should not transmit much noise. Port organizers do not expect the work to interfere with harbor operations much.

As the barges and cranes mobilize, it will not be safe for recreational crabbers and other boaters to be around the marine construction operations, so the contractor will keep all boaters out of their work areas.

For all boaters, keep an eye for active construction areas and temporary buoys and traffic lanes.

The contractor is planning on using temporary buoys to mark areas, red for closed construction zones and green for recommended boat lanes.

For crabbers, when marine construction is underway, the harbormaster will direct that traps be placed north of the Nichols Brothers Boat Builders pier or east of the boat moorings.

Operations manager Ed Field said the crew may be able to drive in up to three pilings per day; 14 are needed for the new breakwater. Removing the current pilings will be an additional issue for the construction crew.

“Some of the inner ones have to go where the existing breakwater actually is,” Field said.

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