February 19, 2019
FEDERAL PUBLIC NOTICE
The District Engineer received a Site Development Plan to establish a sub-aqueous bottom compensatory mitigation site (Mitigation Site) for Federal and State permits as described below:
IN-LIEU FEE SPONSOR
Living River Restoration Trust
475 Water Street
Portsmouth, Virginia 23704
Contact: David Koubsky
WATERWAY AND LOCATION OF THE PROPOSED WORK: The Mitigation Site, to be known as Paradise Creek, encompasses an area that extends over approximately 3,000 linear feet of Paradise Creek covering approximately 10-acres of state-owned river bottom. Paradise Creek is located on the Southern Branch of the Elizabeth River in the City of Portsmouth.
The Mitigation Site is located on property of the Commonwealth of Virginia under the jurisdiction of the Virginia Marine Resources Commission. No utility or other easements are contained within the Mitigation Site. Because the Mitigation Site is located on river bottom below mean low water, there is no local municipal zoning classification for the property.
PROPOSED WORK AND PURPOSE: The Sponsor will restore and enhance the river bottom sediment in accordance with the provisions of the Site Development Plan (SDP) and the Mitigation Site Plan (MSP).
Shallow sediment dredging and backfilling with clean sand mixed with a specified dosage of granular activated carbon is the proposed restoration approach for two discrete areas identified in the MSP. The two sub-aqueous restoration areas cover roughly 2-acres of river bottom.
Direct application of sediment amendment material (granulated activated carbon) is the proposed rehabilitation approach for three discrete areas identified in the MSP. The three rehabilitation areas cover roughly 8-acres of river bottom. Mitigation areas designated for direct amendment, will receive a specified dosage of granulated activated carbon material. The granulated activated carbon will be broadcast over the sediment in a pellet form. The activated carbon acts as a sequestering agent, which binds the available contaminants of concern in the sediment matrix and reduces contaminate bioavailable in the sediment pore water and the water column.
Once mitigation activities are completed, the Sponsor will conduct long-term monitoring and maintain each mitigation area for a period of up to 5 years. The Sponsor will be responsible for complying with this SDP and the MSP until the Mitigation Site is closed.
The sponsor proposed that the geographic service area of this Mitigation Site would include the National Watershed Boundary Dataset Hydrologic Unit Codes 02080208.
Oversight of this Mitigation Site would be by an existing group of federal and state agency representatives. This interagency oversight group is known as the Interagency Review Team (IRT). The Norfolk District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) and the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) chair the IRT.
The actual approval of the use of this Mitigation Site for a specific project is the decision of the Corps pursuant to Section 404 of the Clean Water Act and/or Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act and/or by the DEQ pursuant to Section 401 of the Clean Water Act and Title 62.1 of the Code of Virginia. The Corps and the DEQ provide no guarantee that any particular individual or general permit will be granted authorization to use this Mitigation Site to compensate for unavoidable wetland impacts associated with a proposed permit. Authorization by the Virginia Marine Resources Commission may also be required for its use for specific projects.
AUTHORITY: Issuance of a public notice regarding proposed Mitigation Sites is required pursuant to the “Compensatory Mitigation for Losses of Aquatic Resources; Final Rule,” (Rule) as published in the April 10, 2008, Federal Register, Vol. 73, No. 70, Pages 19594-19705 (33 CFR Parts 325 and 332).
FEDERAL EVALUATION OF PROPOSAL: The Corps 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 this proposed Mitigation Site. This is not an application for work in Waters of the United States. This is a Proposal for a Mitigation Site that has been presented to the Norfolk District Interagency Review Team. The Corps in evaluating this proposal will consider any comments received. Comments are used to assess impacts on endangered species, historic properties, water quality, conservation, economics, aesthetics, general environmental concerns, wetlands, fish and wildlife values, flood hazards, flood plain values, land use, navigation, shoreline erosion and accretion, recreation, water supply and conservation, water quality, energy needs, safety, food and fiber production, mineral needs, and consideration of property ownership.
Preliminary review indicates that: (1) no environmental impact statement would be required; (2) after conducting the NAO ESA Project Review Process, there may be an affect to species listed 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) no known properties eligible for inclusion or included in the National Register of Historic Places are in or near the permit area, or would likely be affected by the proposal. Additional information might change any of these findings.
COMMENT PERIOD: Comments on this Mitigation Site should be made in writing, addressed to the Norfolk District, Corps of Engineers- (ATTN: Peter Kube), 803 Front Street, Norfolk, Virginia 23510-1096, and should be received by the close of business on MARCH 16, 2019. The Proposal and all other documents can be viewed at https://ribits.usace.army.mil/ in the Paradise Creek-LRRT folder.
If you have any questions about this Mitigation Site, please contact:
Mr. Peter R. Kube
803 Front Street
Norfolk, VA 23510