Agua Hedionda Lagoon, located north of San Diego in Carlsbad, California represents the best a waterway can be. It is an ecologically diverse, dynamic, and beautiful place which also plays an important role for residents of Southern California. It serves the Claude “Bud” Lewis Carlsbad Desalination Plant, which provides approximately 10% of San Diego county’s water supplies—nearly 50 million gallons of drinking water each day.
The Agua Hedionda Lagoon encompasses over 400 acres of marine, estuarine and wetlands habitat and has long been home to youth recreation activities, including the YMCA Aquatic Park (affectionately known to its patrons as “Camp H2O”), as well as popular activities for visitors of all ages, such as fishing, kayaking, swimming, canoeing and paddle boarding.
Maintenance dredging was required to remove a flood-tide shoal in the Agua Hedionda Lagoon - Outer Basin in order to maintain the tidal exchange between the Lagoon and the ocean. Similar dredging operations have been performed over the last six decades. Approximately 300,000 cubic yards of sand were to be removed from the Lagoon – Outer Basin and the dredged sand will be placed on adjacent beaches: North Beach, Middle Beach and South Beach.
Poseidon Resources (Channelside) LP is responsible for the Lagoon dredging. Pacific Dredge & Construction was brought on board after Poseidon went through a lengthy permitting process with all Regulatory Agencies. The goal was to dredge approximately 300,000 cu yds, nourish the beaches and to make sure the general public, surfers, and vehicles could transit the area safely.
A major challenge point for this project was water access. There is a bridge between the ocean and Agua Hedionda Lagoon. Most marine equipment cannot be broken down and transported by land, so Pacific Dredge & Construction became creative overcoming this access issue. Coordinating with the tides, we reduced equipment height as much as possible before pushing them underneath the bridge. Once inside, the equipment was fully set up. Thousands of feet of the discharge pipe were towed in and connected.
Surrounding Agua Hedionda Lagoon, homes, beaches, and businesses were pleased to experience how quiet our dredge SANDPIPER was. A state-of-the-art fully electric dredge, it provided a minimum disturbance to neighbors while being efficient. The SANDPIPER completed the project in record time for the amount dredged.
Poseidon Waters was very pleased with Pacific Dredge & Construction’s performance. Thanks to the work of crew members and management team, Poseidon awarded Pacific Dredge and Construction the contract for the next 8 years of dredge cycles.