Dredging project to start soon

By Jim McCabe on June 18 at 12:45pm

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Here’s a reminder that the Lake Mauvaisterre dredging project is about to begin.

Jacksonville aldermen gave the green light to the project last fall, which will cost about $2.6 million. The goal of the project is to increase water quality and capacity for the city’s main source of backup water.

Reggie Benton is the president of Benton and Associates, the engineering group overseeing the project.

“The contractor, Great Lakes, has been working for several weeks to establish their dredging equipment. They hope to do some test runs with it yet this week and begin dredging next week,” says Benton.

“We plan to remove 550,000 cubic yards of silt from Lake Mauvaisterre and deposit it into the recently-constructed sediment basin. It’ll be pumped in there hydraulically, and the silt will settle out and the lake water will return to the lake,” he continues.

Benton says the disruption to the lake’s neighbors and recreational users should be minimal.

“We don’t believe that there will be any real negative impact to them. Most of the dredging is going to be taking place out in the main body of the water, not right up against the lake shore, which automatically creates a barrier between the dredging operations and any residents or users of the lake,” Benton explains.

At an expected pace of six days a week, 23 hours a day, Benton believes the project could be finished by October.