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Economy and Business

The Port of Cleveland is looking for ways to expand its dredge material storage capacity
Engineers are looking at raising the storage facility walls and selling  the sediment

Kevin Niedermier
The Port of Cleveland
Courtesy of The City of Cleveland
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In The Region:
Engineers are looking at new ways to stretch the Port of Cleveland’s capacity to store dredge material beyond its current 3 to 4 years.    
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The millions of cubic feet of sediment dredged from Cleveland’s shipping channel is now stored in containment vessels just off the shore near Burk Lakefront Airport. Engineer John Hull was hired by the port earlier this year to figure out what to do with the material cleared from the channel to keep freighters moving. He says raising the sides of the containment vessels, if that’s structurally possible and financially feasible, could add 20 years. But selling the sediment rather than storing it is also being considered. Hull says much of what is pulled from the shipping channel is a desirable coarse grained material.


Hull:  “These types of materials could be used in road sub base, they could be used in concrete perhaps if screened, or for use in asphalt, or combined with other materials to make topsoil or a loamy type material. The good news is that the preliminary studies show this is worth looking into more.”


Hull adds that the sediment in many parts of the shipping channel is low in toxic chemicals, and could be used in backyards. Another possibility is filtering out sediment at the tributaries before it enters the shipping channel. That material could also be sold. Hull’s study should be complete in about 6 months.                                                                                                             
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