The Seward Phoenix Log - News of the Eastern Kenai Peninsula since 1966

By Fern Greenbank
LOG Editor 

Breakwater rock contract approved

 

Courtesy City of Seward

Phase 1 of the Seward Marine Industrial Complex is production of rock for the breakwater, outlined in red above.

One more step in the construction of the Seward Marine Industrial Center is about to take place. The City Council approved a contract between the city and Orion Marine Contractors, Inc., with headquarters in Houston, Texas to start producing the rock needed to build the breakwater, the key component to the industrial complex.

The $6 million contract calls for almost 200 tons of rock that will be blasted and created at the city's rock quarry that includes primary armor rock, secondary armor rock, core rock and flood control rock.

"We're really lucky we don't have to go elsewhere to get the rock," said Assistant City Manager Ron Long. "Other ports' projects have almost been derailed by the cost of transporting rock."

Producing the rock is Phase One of the massive SMIC development project. Long said it is hoped that the rock phase will be finished by April. That would allow the actual breakwater work to take place from April to mid-October, a window created by Fish and Game guidelines to protect salmon in the bay.

Long said the vessel simulator at AVTEC was used to design the breakwater. Engineers used the simulator to see how different kinds of vessels with varying depth needs would navigate a breakwater.

"It takes longer to produce the rock than it does to build the breakwater," said Long. So, while the rock phase is underway, preparing requests for proposals for the breakwater construction will be prepared.

Orion was awarded the contract just to produce the rock. A new contract for construction of the breakwater will be issued, though Orion could also bid on that project.

The breakwater will make it possible for large vessels to dock and undergo ship repair, said Long. That's a service hard to find in Alaska which will make Seward an important destination for the Alaska fleet.

The funding for the breakwater project was appropriated by the State of Alaska.

 

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