Watershed district purchases dredgePublished 10:32pm Monday, September 24, 2012
A dredge, pumps and other equipment needed to clean out Fountain and Albert Lea lakes are now in the ownership of the Shell Rock River Watershed District.crack
District officials on Monday purchased a 2010 IMS 7012 HP 51-foot Versi dredge for $340,000, along with pumps, piping and other equipment for an additional $435,000 during an auction at Ritchie Bros. in Owatonna. The district board of managers authorized the purchase at an emergency meeting Friday.
“Now that we have the dredge, we’ve made a clear statement about what direction we’re going,” said District Administrator Brett Behnke. “It was a big piece of the puzzle.”
Behnke said in a previous interview that the dredge, which can dig 30-feet deep, had about 2,000 previous hours logged from a Canadian company that dredged near Kellogg. It fits 14-inch pipe, has a John Deere engine and is equipped with GPS. He said it sells new for $540,000.
The dredging equipment purchased includes piping that sells new for $300,000 and three pumps that sell new for about $125,000 each, he said.
“We’re excited about the dredge and we’re looking forward to moving ahead on our overall lake plans for Fountain and Albert Lea lakes,” Behnke said.
In the past few years, the district has sought bonding dollars for dredging Fountain Lake without success. The estimated cost at that time was $15 million.
Behnke said though he is uncertain at this point how much the dredge purchase will save overall, he does know it will save money.
He said from having talked with other communities that completed dredging projects recently, the dredging cost between $4 to $12 a cubic yard. He noted it will be substantially less owning the equipment. Operators and other crews would be hired to operate the equipment.
Behnke noted that though the dredge was a step forward for the dredging project, he wanted to let people know that the earliest this project could potentially happen is 2014. He said the project needs additional funding and needs to acquire proper permitting and site selection.