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Work Moves Quickly in Port of Galilee


Narragansett – Representatives of the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (DEM) appeared on Tuesday night to update the Galilee Advisory Committee on projects currently underway at the Port of Galilee.

Cranes, heavy equipment and construction materials have been on hand at the Port throughout the winter with projects extending from the breakwater at Salty Brine Beach, north to the Great Island Access Bridge.

$6M South Bulkhead Reconstruction Moving Quickly

The South Bulkhead Reconstruction Project, encompassing replacement and reconstruction of 925 feet of existing steel bulkhead from Salty Brine beach to State Pier 3 is underway.

“The barge is now moved over to the South end of the project at Champlin’s. They have successfully driven sheet pile from the very end, the southern end of the bulkhead all the way to “C” dock as of today,” said Daniel Costa, Port Manager for DEM’s Coastal Resources. “B dock has gotten piles already installed and they are moving the barge again tomorrow [to] continue on work. They are moving very quickly right now.”

According to Costa, the contractors, Narragansett Dock Works, Inc., intend on driving 60 ft. per day as long as there is no obstruction. Additional crews are scheduled to follow behind the pile driving crew, installing a concrete cap along the top of the bulkhead.

“Everything is going extremely well,” said Costa. “They haven’t hit any obstructions and as far as I’m concerned, I am extremely satisfied with the contractor’s work, the speed and quality of his work as well.”

New corrugated steel bulkhead in place at the dock at Champlin's Seafood in Galilee. (Photo Tracey C. O'Neill June 2014)

New corrugated steel bulkhead in place at the dock at Champlin’s Seafood in Galilee. (Photo Tracey C. O’Neill June 2014)

The corrugated sheet piles being driven vary between 30 and 60 feet dependent on the area being worked within the project.

“The next stage in the project, is they are going to pump out the negative space between the old bulkhead and the new, fill that void with concrete,” said Costa. “They have already started to score and cut the new bulkhead down a little bit to accept the cap that’s going to go on top of it.”

The concrete cap for the bulkhead that runs along the docks replaces the existing corroded metal cap.

The $6 million port infrastructure project, being conducted under the purview of DEM’s Division of Planning and Development was funded through a $2.9 million U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) grant and matching State of Rhode Island Capital and General Funds.

“They should have spent another $6 million, said Tom Dixon in an interview on the dock at Champlin’s Seafood on Tuesday night.

A lifelong Narragansett resident who grew up in Point Judith, Dixon’s father worked for the Fishermen’s Co-op, joining in 1952. Dixon remembers the steel bulkhead construction in the 1970’s.

“My father worked for the Co-op. They had to close the trash plant down to put the bulkhead in – the steel bulkhead,” Dixon said. “So I know that most of the bulkhead was done in 1971.”


Tom Dixon, lifelong resident of Point Judith on the docks at Champlin’s Seafood at twilight on June 10, 2014. (Photo Tracey C. O’Neill)

Working for Rhode Island Engine, Co. Inc., for 29 years, Dixon is familiar with port machinations and infrastructure.

Pointing North up the bulkhead, he said, “ They went this way, from the State Pier back around to where Deep Sea Fish was. That was back around 1971. They came this way (South) in 1977. This is newer.”

The local DEM office on site at the port is coordinating logistics for the project.

State Pier 3 Project Complete

The overhaul project at State Pier 3 is almost complete according to Larry Mouradjian, Associate Director of DEM. Mouradjian asked for an update on the Pier 3 project that included resurfacing of the pier, bracing, replacement of dolphin clusters and pilings, and electrical upgrades.

“State Pier 3 is complete besides the two electrical pedestals and a minor cross-bracing issue,” said Costa.

The State Pier 3 project was funded by Department of Transportation Intermodal Funds.


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