For the month of January, the Orion Marine Group crew building a new jetty at the mouth of the Point Hudson Marina will double its number and its work hours.
That means two crews instead of one will be working back-to-back 12-hour shifts, for a total of 24 hours a day. Both crews will work six days a week.
Doubling the work is expected to get the in-water portion of the project done by the end of January, said Port of Port Townsend Executive Director Eron Berg. That window was set by federal and state fisheries biologists to ensure safe passage of young salmon and other protected species.
“It’s all hands on deck to power through to the end,” said Berg. Despite the added hours, Berg said he believes the noise impact on the neighborhoods around Point Hudson should be minimal. Almost all of the 180 steel pilings had been vibrated into place as of December 29, with a dozen final ones pounded past obstructions by a pile-driver. While a few pilings have yet to be levelled, most of the remaining in-water work involves installing tie rods and an exterior buffer, then placing an estimated 5,000 tons of armor rock inside the pilings. The rock forms the jetty’s breakwater. Based on Orion’s work last year rebuilding the north jetty, Berg said neighbors may hear crane operations and rock placement, but not for long and hopefully not too disruptive.
Once Orion meets its in-water deadline of January 29, there will be ample time to complete the other above-water work, such as the pedestrian walkway, prior to the scheduled reopening of the Point Hudson Marina on March 1. The Port plans a reopening ceremony in April.
Both the Port and Orion had hoped to avoid nighttime work, Berg said, but are intent on completing the in-water portion within the fisheries window. Berg noted the project could have started in mid-summer, but the Port held off to allow the Wooden Boat Festival in early September.
The replacement of both breakwaters is a $14 million job. The north one was completed by Orion last year. Half the funds came from a federal grant, joined by $2.5 million from Washington State, funding from Jefferson County and the rest from the Port’s voter-approved Industrial Development District levy.