Dredging the Martinez Marina is a staple on the city’s to-do list, but this time around the task encompasses some new features.
The Martinez City Council voted Wednesday to award the project to the California Dredging Company.
This year, the city engineer asked interested contractors not to submit bids in dollar amounts, but in the number of cubic yards of silt they could remove for a fixed cost of $250,000.
And Martinez has a new species to consider: the endangered salt harvest mouse. The city must report to the U.S. Department of Fish and Wildlife on the amount of pickleweed in the marina, where the tiny creatures nest.
“Fish and Wildlife kind of threw us a curve ball at the last hour,” city engineer Tim Tucker told the council Wednesday. “Before, they had only worried about smelt in the waters where we dredge.”
But the agency is working “very diligently” with the city to make sure the permits are in place in ample time for the dredging, he said.
California Dredging Company, which has worked on projects in the city and around the Bay Area over the past several years, agreed to dredge 22,505 cubic yards for $250,000 -- more than the engineer's estimate of 19,700.
Salt River Construction Corporation offered to dredge 12,077 cubic yards for the same price; and Dutra Construction, 10,066.
Typically, the window for dredging at the marina extends from the beginning of August to the end of November – and, occasionally, into December -- to minimize impacts on salmon Longfin and Delta smelt. Dredging must take place in the latter part of November to work around the salt marsh harvest mouse, according to the federal agency.
Depending on the weather and tides, the job should take two to three weeks, a memo from the city manager to the council says.
The four areas slated for dredging include the entrance, the main fairway, the end of the B and C docks, and underneath the missing portion of the C dock.
A $500,000 donation from Shell will pay for design, mitigation fees, surveys, construction and other costs.