Retaining wall issues raise cost of Quincy Barge Dock work

Published: Nov. 29, 2021 at 5:53 PM CST
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QUINCY (WGEM) - The ongoing effort to improve the barge dock just south of Quincy hit a new roadblock, after consulting firms confirmed that the project would be more expensive than first thought.

The original project goal was to raise the dock operating platform so it could perform at river levels up to 23 feet, the level at which the lock and dam closes to barge traffic.

Other improvements were also planned, such as raising the road to the dock and adding more pavement.

However, when engineers investigated the dock, they found there were some significant structural issues with the dock’s retaining wall.

“The rods that anchor the wall back into the bank are deteriorated to the point where they’re structurally not able to take additional fill on it without collapsing, so we need to repair that first,” said Director of Utilities and Engineering Jeffrey Conte.

Conte said natural wear and tear from the river led to the deterioration, and that any work to improve the barge dock is secondary to the work needed to make the facility structurally safe.

Despite the higher cost, Conte said the project is still necessary because the dock helps both local industries and the city of Quincy.

“There is revenue generated by having material go through the barge dock so we would certainly, both the local industry and the city, is really interested in getting this work done to allow more product to come through and hopefully make more improvements at the facility to expand its capabilities,” Conte said.

He said the next step is to open the project up for bids, and then head to City Council afterward with a set cost.

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