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American Shipper

Corps of Engineers begins Stockton Channel deepening study

Corps of Engineers begins Stockton Channel deepening study

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has launched a multiyear study of the Stockton Deep Water Channel to determine the benefits of a dredging more of the channel 40 feet.

   While the Corps are considering removing two to five feet of material in only the shallowest portions of the channel, the added depth would allow more fully laden cargo vessels to transit the nearly 75 miles from San Francisco Bay to the inland Stockton port.

   Estimated to cost up to $140 million, the dredging plan would affect areas of the channel from San Pablo Bay to Stockton.

   Built in the early 1930s to a depth of 30 feet, the Deep Water Channel went through a major dredging project in the late 1980s, providing up to 70 feet of depth in some areas. The proposed Corps project is likely the last time that the channel would be deepened, Port Director Richard Aschieris told the Stockton Record.

   The Corps would cover about 75 percent of the dredging project, about 12 percent would come from voter-approved state transportation bonds and the rest would be paid for by the port. Environmental studies of the project are expected to be competed by 2010, according to the Corps timeline for the project.

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