North Bluff Seawall project began in 2007 with the intent of performing seawall repairs the existing deteriorated seawall and constructing access improvements for an authorized structure. CLE assisted the Town of Oak Bluffs with grant application resulting in the town receiving $8,000,000 in state and federal funding. The project footprint was established in 2009 and a conceptual concrete seawall replacement project was developed based on Town of Oak Bluffs project objectives, local, state, and federal funding mechanisms, environmental requirements and the integration of the seawall project into the framework of the existing OFBA Fish Pier and proposed OB Beach Nourishment II projects. Prior to the public bid of the project in 2014 the town was notified that the federal funding for the project was no longer available. Pursuant to a request from DCR Waterways to design a more efficient seawall project CLE proposed a steel alternative sheet pile design with a reduced construction duration to allow the project to continue and reach it completion date prior to the expiration of the remaining funding sources. The seawall replacement was redesigned incorporating the steel sheet pile alternative and the final design was developed. The project was publicly bid in late 2015 and award for to a contractor for $5,900,000.
Construction began in January 2016 and CLE’s team worked with the town and the contractor to construct 700’ of steel sheet pile wall with grouted anchor tendon tiebacks, stone revetment protection, and a timber boardwalk with tropical hardwood decking and stainless steel railing system along the North Bluff. The steel sheet pile wall and stone revetment raised the top elevation of the wall by 4’ to improve coastal resiliency, provide increased protection against storm and flood damage, and address future sea level rise concerns. The plaza area adjacent to the Steam Ship Authority Ferry Pier was also expanded, the entire bluff was revegetated with native plantings, and a concrete ramp and additional stairs were installed down to the beach to provide universal access.
With a challenging schedule, involved abutters, hazardous weather conditions, budgetary constraints, and a remote island location, there were no shortage of outside obstacles to overcome on an already complicated project. The successful and timely completion of this project shows why CLE is a leader in marine and waterfront engineer, and construction management.