- National Grid
- Newburyport, MA
Situated on the southern shoreline of the Merrimack River in Newburyport Harbor, approximately 2.7 miles from the mouth of the Atlantic Ocean, the shoreline of the property in Newburyport, MA sat in disrepair due to the ravages of time, tidal fluctuations, severe storms, and ice impacts. Amplifying the need for repairs was the fact that this piece of shoreline was surrounded by a US Coast Guard Station, the American Yacht Club – America’s oldest continually operating yacht club, and an electric substation. In November 2017, Charter began work to stabilize and restore the shoreline to prevent future erosion by removing and replacing the existing shoreline structures with a new stone revetment, constructing a mortared granite block wall, and a constructing a 4-foot-high soil berm to protect infrastructure from future storm and tidal surges.
Challenges and Solutions
Weather was one of the biggest challenges on this project. The town’s construction of the new public access Clipper Trail, a 1.1-mile trail for non-motorized users, required the revetment work to be completed during the winter months when trail use was low. Extreme cold in January stopped work on multiple days and the project team battled through four Nor’easters to complete the job successfully.
Portions of the proposed revetment extended multiple feet below mean low tide, so to complete these sections the crew had to sequence their work with the ever-shifting tide cycles. Adjusting the project schedule daily to coincide with low tide allowed the crew to maximize the work schedule. The crew also built temporary earthen dams daily to prevent water intrusion when completing work at the toe of the revetment and to extend the work period during low tide.