Another week, another headache for the South Whidbey Harbor expansion project

More challenges with the marina expansion project are ahead for the Port of South Whidbey commissioners.

Another problem has arisen with the expansion of South Whidbey Harbor. This time the issue is with gangway alignment.

More challenges with the marina expansion project are ahead for the Port of South Whidbey commissioners.

During the board’s regular meeting Tuesday, Nov. 12., Operations Manager Ed Field detailed yet another problem with the project, this time concerning the new gangway,

The problem is rooted in an issue with the underwater cables that keep the new dock in place as it rises and falls with the tide. Boiled down, it’s affecting the gangway’s ability to stay on its designed track.

Field requested information for cable-tension records from the initial construction so engineers can figure out what’s going on.

“We are urgently requesting all the information that Neptune and Mike Carlson have,” Field said.

Field received a preliminary number from contractor Neptune Marine of $12,000 plus tax to revise and reconfigure the cables to pull the dock toward the gangway. Workers will also determine just what the problem is.

“We need to get this squared away now and get as solid as we can,” he said, referring to the fast-approaching winter season.

To date, the Port has received about $152,000 in unplanned expense for the project, nearing their budget contingency of $158,971.

The issue follows a series of problems, including buried logs and contaminated soil in the parking lot, anchor and piling problems — a barge accident even resulted in the sinking of a crane.

Field met with contractors from Mike Carlson Enterprises and Neptune Marine to look into the issue on Thursday. He is now waiting on proposals from the contractors to determine how to proceed with the work.

The commissioners will meet before the end of the month in a special meeting to decide how to proceed. The time, date and location of the meeting is pending as the port waits for the proposals.

Field said the contractors hope to remobilize with the crane and barge by Nov. 25. Port Commissioner Curt Gordon is hoping the cost is affordable.

“We have done a lot to compensate the contractors,” Gordon said. “We need them to help us out here.”


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