By WILLARD KILLOUGH III
CAROLINA BEACH - The Carolina Beach Town Council heard an update from Gil DuBois, Director of Operations, regarding an ongoing project to dredge the Carolina Beach Lake on South Lake Park Blvd.
The Town Council awarded a bid to Civil Works Contracting in the amount of $2,766,338 during their January 10th, meeting to dredge the lake. The goal is to make the lake deeper to a consistent depth of 6' feet and improve capacity to hold storm water runoff that has traditionally caused flooding of surrounding properties and roadways.
The project began earlier this year and as of April 19th, the project was 69 days behind schedule. A letter titled, "Notice of Deficient Performance" was sent to the contractor, Civil Works Contracting, LLC, on April 19th by the Town's engineering firm, SEPI Engineering and Construction, requesting information and plans showing how the project will be completed prior to the February 9th, 2018 deadline.
On May 19th, a second, "Notice of Deficient Performance" was sent to Civil Works.
Civil Works responded with an updated schedule and information on how they plan to proceed and meet the February deadline.
DuBois explained Tuesday night, "There was a lot going on last week. We had four sets of additional barges come in which is eight barges. Once the barges arrived and they started putting them in the water. They had some welds
break lose. They also had a previous device that they were going to utilize to more or less suction material out
of the bottom. After trying for about two weeks that didn't work so they shipped it back to California."
He explained, "Currently they will have a second long reach excavator on site possibly as early as tonight or tomorrow and by this Friday they will have two long reach excavators digging out the lake. Currently today they hauled between thirty and forty loads of material."
The material removed from the lake is loaded into trucks that transport the material to a holding area at the Town's Sewer Treatment Plant off Dow Road on the west side of the Island.
DuBois said, "Today is the first day they've actually removed soil since last Tuesday. They are ramping up to try to double their production. During the progress meeting today we were asked to allow them to remain at their current load out site. We looked at a couple of options. When we actually started the project we had them going over to 3rd Street if they needed to on the
opposite side of the lake near the pumps. We were also going to use Clarendon when school was out so we could address that area on the west end of the lake."
DuBois said the contractor would like to remain based at the area near the parking lot accessed from Atlanta Avenue rather than moving around the lake. That will also eliminate the need for trucks to access the lake from Clarendon Avenue at the Carolina Beach Elementary School.
DuBois said, "They will not have to work inside of the school zone at the end of Clarendon which I think it a very good thing because it's much safer."
He said a new schedule and route for hauling dredge material to the area of Dow Road will be available soon.
DuBois said, "We've got several things in place right now. We've definitely seem some progress. We did our first survey last week with our engineers. There was some discrepancy we are trying to get resolved with how much material they have removed from the lake verses what the contractor thinks and the engineer has documentation for. But we should have that resolved by the first of next week."
He said, "It's about a 40% deviation in what was submitted and what the engineer recognizes. Looking at some data today, it may be a survey issue. We have old data that a lot of the stuff in Carolina Beach was set up on. The original data is 11.89" inches different than the current data that we used which is 1988 data. If the survey was setup on the incorrect data, it's going to show a one foot deficiency showing that the lake bottom is a little bit different."
He said, "I challenged the engineer today to provide me current information for that. One foot doesn't sound like a whole lot but one foot inside that pond is a massive amount of material." He said he should have an answer by next week..
Mayor Wilcox said, "You used the term, they have established a route. Not just specific to this project but all of the stuff we have going on in Town that are major disruptions, infrastructure projects. I know I'm getting calls. My fair share of calls... but I think we need to be very creative how we establish these routes. If we are working in one area like the Lake... we can't run every truck down that street every day. We've got to find a way to spread that out to different streets so that the impact is not as substantial to the residents on that one street."
He said, "I know the easiest fastest way to do it is to just go out and go up the street. But maybe we need to go out and go up two streets sometimes and then go out."