DETROIT – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Detroit District has awarded an almost $3.8 million contract to Job Site Services, Inc. of Bay City, Michigan for removal of the Sabin Dam and associated restoration of the Boardman River, located in Traverse City, Michigan.
The work to be completed consists of three major components:
Breaching and removal of the Sabin Dam, including its earthen embankment and dewatering of Sabin Pond.
Demolition and removal of the Sabin Dam powerhouse, intake works and existing spillway/gate.
Restoration of the Boardman River from 3,500 feet upstream to 500 feet downstream of Sabin Dam.
Along with other completed and planned restoration initiatives on the Boardman River, removal of Sabin Dam will assist in restoring fish passage and providing aquatic connectivity to Grand Traverse Bay of Lake Michigan, while also restoring wetlands and establishing native plant communities. The project will allow movement of wood and sediment through the river system, eliminate thermal disruption, and restore the natural balance between coldwater and coolwater species.
The project is being executed through a Project Partnership Agreement between the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians (GTB) and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers under the Great Lakes Fishery and Ecosystem Restoration (GLFER) authority, with federal funding provided through the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI).
“This partnership with the Grand Traverse Band and the collaboration with several other federal, state and local stakeholders will help restore the Boardman River to its historic pre-dam conditions and result in significant ecological benefit throughout the watershed.” said Carl Platz, USACE Great Lakes Program Manager. “With all parties focused on this common goal, an amazing transformation of the lower Boardman River is becoming a reality.”
The contractor will begin work this summer with a majority of the work expected to be complete by the end of the calendar year 2018. In addition to USACE and the GTB, this restoration project meets the goals of a wide array of project partners including the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, Great Lakes Fishery Trust, Michigan Department of Natural Resources, Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, Grand Traverse County, City of Traverse City, Grand Traverse Conservation District, Bureau of Indian Affairs, Great Lakes Fishery Commission, Michigan Hydro Relicensing Coalition, and the Conservation Resource Alliance.