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Bulwagga Bay project could be delayed

High water a problem

Mother Nature may delay work to save the Bulwagga Bay shoreline. The project, designed to stop beach erosion, is scheduled to be completed this fall. That timetable may need to be adjusted, though.

Mother Nature may delay work to save the Bulwagga Bay shoreline. The project, designed to stop beach erosion, is scheduled to be completed this fall. That timetable may need to be adjusted, though.

— The town board has selected AES Northeast of Plattsburgh to prepare an engineering plan for the project. AES was the low bidder at $29,501.

Once the engineering plans are complete, the town will seek construction bids.

The town-owned beach and campsite on Lake Champlain is being damaged by Lake Champlain erosion. Without action the public beach and 175-site campground will be lost.

“We’re losing 6 to 10 feet of beach a year,” Scozzafava said. “We’re losing the beach; we’re losing the campground.”

The shoreline has moved back 25 to 40 feet since 1995, according to the Adirondack Park Agency.

Realizing the problem three years ago, local leaders secured permits from the Adirondack Park Agency, the state Department of Environmental Conservation and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to build three revetments made of half-ton rocks reaching into Lake Champlain to combat the erosion. The revetments are 4,080, 4,110 and 4,670 square feet in size, and the beach end of each will be enveloped in landscaped trees and shrubs.

The Bulwagga Bay erosion project is expected to cost $350,000.

Bulwagga Bay generated $302,000 in revenue for the town in 2012, Scozzafava said. The $120,000 profit is being used to off-set 2013 local taxes.

The campsite remains popular. This summer 160 of the 175 sites have been leased for the season.

After the project is finished it will require annual monitoring of erosion and water levels on the beach. The town will be allowed to fill in — or “re-nourish” — areas above the revetments where any erosion takes place.

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