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Posted: 3/7/2017

Expiration date: 3/27/2017

February 24, 2017

The District Commander has received a permit application for work described below:

Lyon Shipyard

WATERWAY AND LOCATION OF THE PROPOSED WORK: The project is located in the Eastern Branch of the Elizabeth River a tributary to the Chesapeake Bay, at 1818 Brown Avenue, Norfolk, Virginia.

PROPOSED WORK AND PURPOSE:  The applicant proposes to install 210 linear feet of sheetpile bulkhead, dredge by mechanical methods a 380-foot by 140-foot basin to -42 feet MLW, install a 380-foot by 124-foot drydock structure (including apron), two associated mooring dolphins and a ramp to provide access from the shipyard to the drydock. An existing pier located in the footprint will be removed. 

Approximately 1,050 square feet of mudflat will be impacted by the backfill associated with the installation of the replacement bulkhead. An estimated total volume of 80,000 cubic yards of material will be disposed in two parts. Due to the presence of metals, PAHs and petroleum hydrocarbons in the upper sediment layers, approximately 35,000 cubic yards of material will be mechanically dredged using an environmental bucket, barged to a transfer station, placed in sealed trucks and disposed of at an upland disposal facility. The remaining approximately 45,000 cubic yards of material has been determined to be acceptable for disposal at Craney Island Dredged Material Management Area (CIDMMA). This material will be mechanically dredged, placed in scowls and barged to the CIDMMA rehandling basin.

In addition to the required Department of the Army permit, the applicant must obtain a Virginia Water Protection Permit/401 certification from the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality assuring that applicable laws and regulations pertaining to water quality are not violated. Project drawings are attached.

AUTHORITY:  Permits are required pursuant to Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899 (33 U.S.C. 403).

FEDERAL EVALUATION OF APPLICATION: The decision whether to issue a permit will be based on an evaluation of the probable impact including cumulative impacts of the proposed activity on the public interest. The decision will reflect the national concern for both protection and utilization of important resources. The benefits which reasonably may be expected from the proposal must be balanced against its reasonably foreseeable detriments. All of the proposal's relevant factors will be considered, including conservation, economics, aesthetics, general environmental concerns, wetlands, cultural values, fish and wildlife values, flood hazards, flood plain values, land use classification, navigation, shoreline erosion and accretion, recreation, water supply and conservation, water quality, energy needs, safety, food and fiber production, mineral needs, consideration of property ownership and, in general, the needs and welfare of the people. 

The Corps of Engineers is soliciting comments from the public; federal, state, and local agencies and officials; Indian Tribes; and other interested parties in order to consider and evaluate the direct, indirect, and cumulative impacts of this proposed activity. Any comments received will be considered by the Corps of Engineers to determine whether to issue, modify, condition or deny a permit for this proposal.  To make this decision, comments are used to assess impacts on endangered species, historic properties, water quality, general environmental effects, and the other public interest factors listed above. Comments are used in the preparation of an Environmental Assessment and/or an Environmental Impact Statement pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act. Comments are also used to determine the need for a public hearing and to determine the overall public interest of the proposed activity.  Anyone may request a public hearing to consider this permit application by writing to the District Commander within 30 days of the date of this notice, stating specific reasons for holding the public hearing. The District Commander will then decide if a hearing should be held.

Preliminary review indicates that: (1) no environmental impact statement will be required; (2) after conducting the NAO ESA Project Review Process, there may be an effect to listed/proposed/candidate species and/or designated/proposed critical habitat under the Endangered Species Act of 1973 and the Official Species List and Species Conclusion Table is attached for review and comment by Fish and Wildlife Service; and (3) properties eligible for inclusion or included in the National Register of Historic Places are in or near the permit area.  Additional information might change any of these findings. 

For compliance with the Coastal Zone Management Act of 1972, as amended for projects located in Tidewater, the applicant must certify that federally licensed or permitted activities affecting Virginia's coastal uses or resources will be conducted in a manner consistent with the Virginia Coastal Zone Management Program (VCP) and obtain concurrence from the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ), Office of Environmental Impact Review (OEIR). We have not received a certification from the applicant prior to publication of this public notice.  It is the applicant’s responsibility to submit a consistency certification to the Office of Environmental Impact Review for concurrence or objection and proof of concurrence must be submitted to the Corps prior to final permit issuance. A template federal consistency certification can be found here: http://www.deq.virginia.gov/Programs/EnvironmentalImpactReview/FederalConsistencyReviews.aspx#cert. For more information or to obtain a list of the enforceable policies of the VCP, contact the Department of Environmental Quality, Office of Environmental Impact Review at (804) 698-4330 or e-mail: bettina.sullivan@deq.virginia.gov or john.fisher@deq.virginia.gov.

The Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, as amended by the Sustainable Fisheries Act of 1996 (Public Law 104-267), requires all Federal agencies to consult with the National Marine Fisheries Service on all actions, or proposed actions, permitted, funded, or undertaken by the agency, that may adversely affect Essential Fish Habitat (EFH). The Eastern Branch of the Elizabeth River contains Essential Fish Habitat (EFH) for the juvenile and adult life stages of 12 species including Windowpane flounder (Scophthalmus aquosus), Bluefish (Pomatomus saltatrix), Butterfish (Peprilus triacanthus), Summer flounder (Paralichthys dentatus), Black Seabass (Centropristis striata), king mackerel (Scomberomorus cavalla), Spanish mackerel (Scomberomorus maculatus), Cobia (Rachycentron canadum), Red drum (Sciaenops ocellata), Dusky shark (Carcharhinus obscurus), Sandbar Shark (Carcharhinus plumbeus), Atlantic Angel Shark (Squatina dumeril).

The habitat which this project would affect consists of the waterway. The proposed project is described in Proposed Work and Purpose, above. Essential Fish Habitat may be impacted by a temporary increase in turbidity in the water column. Our assessment of the project leads us to a preliminary determination that it will not have a substantial adverse effect on EFH and therefore expanded EFH consultation is not required. Our rationale for this preliminary determination is based on the expected short-term nature of the direct impacts and minimal increases in turbidity caused by the proposed work accompanied by the absence of vegetated wetlands, submerged aquatic vegetation, and anadromous fish spawning habitat, existing poor water quality and unsuitable substrate. Based on comments from the National Marine Fisheries Service in response to this public notice, further EFH consultation may be necessary.

COMMENT PERIOD:  Comments on this project should be in writing and can be sent by either email to traycie.l.west@usace.army.mil, or by regular mail, addressed to the Norfolk District, Corps of Engineers (ATTN:  CENAO-WR-R), 803 Front Street, Norfolk, Virginia  23510-1011, and should be received by the close of business on March 27, 2017.

PRIVACY & CONFIDENTIALITY: Comments and information, including the identity of the submitter, submitted in response to this Public Notice may be disclosed, reproduced, and distributed at the discretion of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Information that is submitted in connection with this Public Notice cannot be maintained as confidential by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.  Submissions should not include any information that the submitter seeks to preserve as confidential. 

If you have any questions about this project or the permit process, contact Traycie West by email at traycie.l.west@usace.army.mil.

Dredge Disposal Plan
Endangered Species Information

bulkhead CIDMMA City of Norfolk dredging Dry Dock Elizabeth River Lyon Shipyard