Wednesday, March 19, 2008

$114 Million for Pittsburgh Area Locks and Dams

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Pittsburgh Office today received $114 million for area locks and dams. Jim McCarville, executive director of the Port of Pittsburgh Commission says $69.2 million will go towards projects on the lower Monongahela River at Locks 2,3 and 4 at Braddock, Elizabeth and Charleroi. $42.3 million has been designated for emergency repairs at the Emsworth locks and dam. McCarville says there is severe erosion at Emsworth with the potential for failure. He says the the money will be used for a variety of repairs including the replacement of gates and the chains that lift the gates. Another $2.5 million was awarded for a study to determine long-term needs to improve Emsworth, Dashield and Montgomery dams on the Ohio River. McCarville says from 1992 to 2005 the federal government invested only $22.6 million a year in the region's locks and dams and the $114 million for fiscal 2008 is a welcome realization of the need to invest in these structures. But McCarville warned that similar annual amounts will be needed for the next decade or so.

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