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I'm recopying a letter of inquiry I wrote to and the response I received from Virginia Beach Public Works as to the need for dredging in Crab Creek before February since there is a time-of-year restriction in place by VMRC and dredging can only take place between October and February every year. As with other projects not being done in a timely manner or ill planned by Public Works, I thought it was important to let them know that there are still those looking over their shoulders.

Captain Lee

October 28, 2008

Dear Mr. Kay:

On behalf of the fishing and recreational boating communities, would you kindly give me a status report on having Crab Creek dredged this winter since October thru February is the time in which there are no restrictions on dredging for Crab Creek? Information I would like to report back to the fishing and boating communities is as follows:

1. Does the City have plans to have Crab Creek dredged between now and February, 2009?

2. If not, then please explain why not, especially since Crab Creek is suppose to be 50 ft. wide and 5-6 feet at mean low water, and we know that it is less than 15 ft. wide and will continue to narrow if not dredged in a timely manner. This can, of course, create a hazard to boating when an exiting boat and an entering boat into Crab Creek are forced to pass too closely or try to avoid hitting and end up beaching themselves along side of the Crab Creek Channel shoals. I believe much of the depth of this channel at low tide is also under 3 feet. If left undredge for another season, surely the opening of Crab Creek from the Lynnhaven Inlet will close, and an "exception" to the time of year restrictions will have to be applied for from VMRC. Is it not better to plan ahead knowing the facts of the situation?

3. If Crab Creek will be dredged between now and February, 2009, what type of dredging will be performed, i.e., mechanical vs. hydraulic and please provide as much information as you can as to the bidding information, contractor, when will the dredging begin, and how long is the dredging anticipated to last and any other details in which boaters should be aware of when using Crab Creek during this period.

Thank you for your assistance to this matter. I look forward to hearing from you so that I may continue to keep our boating community safe and informed on important issues, especially during striped bass season.

THE RESPONSE:

Ms. Shuler,

Yes the City is planning to have Crab Creek dredged as well as providing some maintenance dredging to Long Creek in the coming months. The specifications are currently under review and a survey of the Crab Creek and Long Creek channels and the associated material placement areas is underway. Upon completion of the survey the necessary calculations will be performed and incorporated into the specifications. It is anticipated that the project will be advertised for bid in late November to early December with award and Notice to Proceed in January. The project will be packaged to allow either mechanical or hydraulic dredging; the contractors bidding the project will decide how they want to bid the project. Historically mechanical means has been the preferred method by contractors.

In past contracts signs and notices were posted at the boat ramp as well as notification to the Coast Guard for issuance of a Notice To Mariners when the project is to begin and during construction, these procedures will be used again for this contract.

Sincerely,

Michael F. Kay
Coastal Engineering Division
Public Works Engineering
City of Virginia Beach
ph. (757) 385-4511 fax. (757) 385-5783
 

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Thanx lady,
They dredge Crab Creek in January ........just think what a mess Owls Creek is going to be ! The over flow is already full in Jan & Feb........thats going to be the biggest sloppy mud hole parking lot ever~
 
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