Dock replacement at Keystone progressing

The Central Whidbey area manager for state parks said the hope is to start construction this fall.

Like any shoreline work in Puget Sound, it’s taking time to obtain permits for a project to replace a dock and breakwater next to the Coupeville ferry terminal.

Chris Holm, the area manager for state parks in Central Whidbey, said the hope is to start construction this fall and complete it in February 2022.

He said the public boat ramp along Keystone Spit is popular with boaters and anglers since it’s one of only two on the west side of Whidbey Island.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers announced that an environmental assessment must be prepared since the “Fort Casey State Park Inner Harbor Repair and Replacement” would alter a federal project. Public comment must be emailed on or before June 17 to CENWS-Section408@usace.army.mil.

Holm explained that a wind storm during a king tide in December 2018 broke the breakwater structure, which then drifted and struck the dock and broke off one of four pylons.

Floats were added to what’s left of the dock, but it’s only a temporary solution. The floats have to be brought in after summer.

The project, which will be funded through FEMA, will replace the breakwater. The new pylons will be steel instead of rebar-reinforced cement. The former dock, which was “decades old,” will be replaced by two sets of docks that will be more environmentally friendly, Holm said.

The construction window for the project is from July to February in order to avoid conflicting with foraging fish.

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