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SUPPLEMENTAL ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT AND SUPPLEMENTAL SECTION 404(b)(1) EVALUATION New Power Plant Replacement Bridge And Unit 10 Feeder Cable Relocation

Published Dec. 10, 2020
Expiration date: 1/11/2021
SUPPLEMENTAL ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT AND SUPPLEMENTAL SECTION 404(b)(1) EVALUATION
New Power Plant Replacement Bridge And Unit 10 Feeder Cable Relocation
Associated with New Lock Construction, Soo Locks Complex
Sault Ste. Marie, Chippewa County, Michigan

United States Army Corps of Engineers, Detroit District
Published December 11, 2020 -- Expiration date: January 11, 2021

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Detroit District, has prepared a Supplemental Environmental Assessment (SEA) and a Supplemental Section 404(b)(1) evaluation for placement of fill into waters of the U.S. for the proposed construction of an open pier bridge, power line feeder cable relocation and removal of the existing foot bridge that has exceeded life expectancy at the Soo Locks complex, Sault Ste. Marie, MI. Project details are found in the SEA. This SEA supplements the previous NEPA documentation completed for construction of a second Poe sized lock, specifically, the 1985 Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), 2000 Record of Environmental Considerations (REC), 2009 Record of Decision (ROD) and the 2018 Supplemental Information Report (SIR). This notice initiates a 30-day agency/public review of the proposed action.

An evaluation of the effects of placing fill materials in the waters of the United States, pursuant to Section 404(b)(1) of the Clean Water Act, and preliminary Statement of Findings is included with the SEA for this work. Any person who has an interest that may be affected by the in-water fill placement associated with the open pier bridge, or the fill required for feeder cable relocation may request a public hearing. To be considered, the request must be submitted within the 30-day comment period of this notice. The request must clearly state the interest that may be affected and the manner in which such interest may be affected by the proposed breakwater repairs.

Under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act, the USACE had determined in 2014 that the proposed construction of an open pier bridge, power line feeder cable relocation and removal of an existing foot bridge is a separate undertaking from the New Lock project. As such, the USACE determined that the removal of the pedestrian bridge, a contributing feature to the Soo Locks National Historic Landmark, meets the criteria of an “adverse effect” under 36CFR800.5(a)(1) and determined that a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) would need to be prepared. The USACE has prepared a draft MOA which is available below. The proposed construction work is being coordinated with the Michigan State Historic Preservation Office, the National Park Service, and federally recognized tribes.

Any person who has a historical or cultural interest that may be affected by the proposed action which includes the removal of the foot bridge may submit comments, within the 30-day comment period of this notice, and must clearly state what historical or cultural interest may be affected by this activity.

Copies of this Public Notice are being sent to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the State of Michigan and other Federal agencies, tribes, local agencies, interested groups, and individuals. Following the comment period and a review of the comments received, a final decision will be made regarding the necessity of preparing an Environmental Impact Statement for the proposed action.

All comments concerning the proposed project should be made within thirty (30) days from the date of this notice. If no comments are received by the end of the thirty (30) day review period, it will be assumed that you have no comment. Because of the COVID-19 virus, please provide all comments by email with the subject line to: LRE-NPP@usace.army.mil