Work is set to begin on the Mackaye Harbor Boat Ramp and Shoreline Restoration Project on August 8, 2022. If all goes as planned it will be completed by September 10. The month of work is slated to remove all shoreline armor from the beach in an effort to restore spawning habitat for surf smelt and sand lance – two key feeder fish for endangered Chinook salmon. The project will also allow for improved beach access for the public.
In the 1960s, a road was built on the Mackaye Harbor beach to access a sand quarry where the present boat launch is now located. The road was never fully removed and armor from the road is still on the bank and beach, occupying the space where sand and gravel should be to provide spawning habitat for key feeder fish. Removing the old armor and restoring the beach to its former sandy habitat has been a long-awaited project. Starting in 2018, San Juan County’s Environmental Stewardship Department began plans for restoring the beach by removing boulders, nourishing the beach with a mix of sand and gravel, and promoting a healthy habitat that will benefit the Chinook salmon and ultimately the local Southern Resident Killer Whale population.
San Juan County received grant funding from the Puget Sound Acquisition and Restoration fund and the Estuary Salmon Restoration Program. Combined with matching funds from the County, the $270,150 project gets underway in August with the help of A1 Marine LLC, a San Juan Island-based marine construction company.
What to Expect:
• The boat launch will remain open during non-construction work weeks.
• Norman Rd and the boat launch will be closed to traffic and pedestrians during the construction work weeks.
• Construction work is expected begin around 7am on slated days.
Proposed Work Schedule for Mackaye Harbor Boat Ramp And Shoreline Restoration Project
August 8 - 9, 2022: Mobilization of equipment to site
August 10 – 15, 2022: Site Work - Removal of shore revetment and dense rock cover; Set aside large angular armor rock and quarry spalls for rock wall; Excavation for and construction of rock wall; Barging in materials
August 16 - 22, 2022: No work- site can be open to the public
August 23 - 28, 2022: Site Work - Remove any remaining material; Place all materials; Barge in any additional materials
August 29 - September 4, 2022: No work - site can be open to the public
September 5 - 10, 2022: Contingency dates for any remaining work; Inspection; Site clean up
Work will begin at 7:00a.m. on all work days and continue until tide prohibits equipment operating on the beach (around 2:00pm). The boat launch will be closed during the construction work weeks