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Living Breakwaters Construction Update - August 2022


August was a busy month for the Living Breakwaters Project! Breakwater ‘A’ and ‘B’ are scheduled to be completed by the end of the summer. The contractor has finished placing toe armor stone and is starting to place armor stone on Breakwater ‘C’. Acting as the control segment for habitat monitoring purposes, Breakwater C is the only breakwater in the system that doesn’t have any ecologically-enhancing features such as ECOncrete™ tidepools, ECOncrete™ armor units, crest crenelations (Breakwater ‘A’ and ‘B’), or reef ridges (Breakwater ‘E’, ‘F’, and ‘G’). You can read more about these features and how the Living Breakwaters are designed for collecting ecological performance data in the fun fact below. To the east of Breakwater ‘C’, all ECOncrete™ ecologically-enhanced concrete armor units have been placed onto Breakwater ‘D’. Armor stone will be installed next. Farther east, the contractor is starting to install marine mattresses at Breakwater ‘E’. These stone-filled mattresses form the base layer of this breakwater.

Carver Quarry (in Johnstown, NY) has finished producing all the toe armor stone-the largest stone in the breakwaters-needed for the project. The quarry continues to produce armor and core stone for the project, and these continue to be shipped down to the project site from Port of Coeymans (in Ravena, NY) by barge.

Also, we will be holding a public shorewalk event on Saturday, October 1, 2022 at 1pm. Please join us! Click here for more information.

How is the Living Breakwaters Project designed to create habitat and support monitoring to evaluate ecological benefits?

The Living Breakwaters incorporate a variety of integral features to enhance ecological benefits. These features include “reef ridges” and “reef streets” (the narrow spaces between reef ridges), “crest crenelations,” and artificial tidepools and armor units made of ECOncrete™. These features will enhance the breakwaters’ ability to attract and maintain aquatic species and increase biodiversity by providing various ecological niches and improving the ecosystem services provided by the breakwaters. Once the structures are completed, some breakwaters will also be seeded with live oysters!

After construction is complete, the performance of the Living Breakwaters’ ecologically enhancing features will be monitored to understand how they are performing, determine if they should be modified to enhance performance (adaptive management) and to inform their use in future ecologically-enhanced breakwaters. By using a variety of different types and combinations of enhancements as well as a “control,” the project will provide valuable information on the relative effectiveness of these ecological enhancements. With no specific enhancement features, Breakwater C acts as our control area and will serve as the reference for measuring the effectiveness of the enhanced breakwaters structures.

How is the Living Breakwaters Project designed to create habitat and support monitoring to evaluate ecological benefits?

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Wednesday, August 31, 2022