Work to start this monthThe U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has awarded an Illinois company with a contract for maintenance dredging of 104 miles of the lower Columbia River, the mouth of the Columbia River and Coos Bay.

Great Lakes Dredge and Dock Company of Oak Brook, Ill., was awarded the contract worth up to $3,968,363. Work will be performed in stages to allow the Corps flexibility in prioritizing work based on limited funding.

Under the contract, Great Lakes will initially remove about 1.5 million cubic yards of sand from the mouth of the Columbia and up to 100,000 cubic yards of sand between the river's mouth and Vancouver, Wash. As additional funds become available, the company may be asked to perform additional dredging. Work is expected to take place between June and September 2004.

All materials dredged from the navigation channels will be placed at federally-designated disposal sites in the Pacific Ocean and at naturally deep locations within the Columbia River federal navigation channel. Some material will also be placed along the south side of the north jetty at the mouth of the Columbia.

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