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A deep-water, all-weather port on the west coast which would accommodate both interisland and trans-Pacific shipping is needed for accommodation of commerce originating in or destined to those areas. Such facilities would also be of advantage to the United States in case of emergency. The excess of prospective benefits over the estimated annual carrying charges for the improvement is sufficient to warrant expenditure of the required public funds.
SHREWSBURY RIVER, N. J.
Senator SPARKMAN (presiding). The next project is the Shrewsbury River, N. J.
Senator Hendrickson, we will be glad to hear from you on this project.
STATEMENT OF HON. ROBERT C. HENDRICKSON, A SENATOR FROM
THE STATE OF NEW JERSEY Senator HENDRICKSOX. Mr. Chairman, I am here acting for the Congressman from that district who regrets he cannot attend the hearing this morning because of another meeting.
I have here, which I suppose you already have, the report and recomnendations of General Wheeler.
Senator SPARKMAN. We have been submitted a memorandum here which I assume contains the same substance.
Senator HENDRICKSON. I would like to have it put in the record. Senator SPARKMAN. It will be placed in the record. (The memorandum is as follows:)
JULY 21, 1949. MEMORANDUM It is my understanding that an amendment is being offered to the river and harbor flood-control bill which is now being considered by the Public Works l'omninittee of the Senate to incorporate the following recommendations of the Engineer Corps in relation to a report made by them about a year ago concerning the dredging of the Shrewsbury River and various tributaries thereto:
DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY,
1. I submit herewith for transmission to Congress the report of the Board of Engineers for Rivers and Harbors in response to resolutions of the Committee on Rivers and Harbors of the House of Representatives, adopted February 1, 1946, and March 5, 1946, requesting the Board to review the reports heretofore submitted on the Shrewsbury River, N. J., with a view to determining if it is advisable to improve the north branch of Blossom Cove at this time; and the reports on Shrewsbury River, N. J., submitted in Rivers and Harbors Committee Document No. 31, Seventy-fourth Congress, first session, and previous reports, with a view to determining if it is advisable to modify the project for the south branch of the Shrewsbury River at this time.
2. After full consideration of the reports secured from the district and division engineers, the Board recomiends that the existing project for Shrewsbury River, N. J., be modified to provide for (a) a turning basin and anchorage 14 the vicinity of Red Bank, 6 feet deep and about 19 acres in area; (b) a clannel in (laypit (reek, 6 feet deep and 100 feet wide from the 6-foot curve di the North Branch to the head of the creek, a distance of about 1.0 mile; (C) a runnel in (real port Creek, 6 feet deep, 100 feet wide and 2.0 miles long from the improved channel in the South Branch to the New York & Long Branch Tailroad bridge; and (d) a channel in Little Silver Creek, 6 feet deep, 100 feet wide and 1.6 miles long from the improved channel in the South Branch to the Seven Bridge Road Bridge, all generally in accordance with the plan of the
district engineer and with such modifications thereof as in the discretion of the Secretary of the Army and the Chief of Engineers may be advisable, at an estimated cost to the United States of $363,000 for construction with $23,000 annually for maintenance in addition to that now required, provided that responsible local agencies give assurances satisfactory to the Secretary of the Army that they will (a) provide without cost to the United States all lands, easements, rights-of-way, and spoil-disposal areas necessary for the construction and subsequent maintenance of the project, when and as required; (b) hold and save the United States free from damages due to the construction and subse quent maintenance of the improvement; (c) provide and maintain a suitable public wharf on each of the creeks to be improved, which shall be open to all on equal terms; (d) remove at their own expense the Locust Avenue Bridge over Claypit Creek; and (e) make cash contributions of $25,000, $33,000, and $27,500 toward the cost of improvement of Claypit, Oceapport, and Little Silver Creeks, respectively; and provided further that construction of any unit of the proposed improvement may be undertaken independently of the other units when the required local cooperation has been provided.
3. After due consideration of these reports, I concur in the views and recommendations of the Board.
R. A. WHEELER,
Chief of Engineers. It is further my understanding that these recommendations reached the House Committee on Public Works too late for incorporation in the bill and that is the reason it was not considered by the House. The early engineers' report on this matter did not include a recommendation to dredge the various creeks mentioned therein, but at a subsequent review by the Rivers and Harbors Board of the Corps of Engineers the district engineer's report was amended to include these creeks.
Of course, it would be necessary for the local communities to meet the requirements of the Army Engineer Corps before anything can be done in the matter, but it is very important for the communities to have these projects included in the bill and I earnestly urge that you actively support this amendment.
JAMES C. AUCHINCLOSS, M. C. Senator HENDRICKSON. I would like to say this is a very badly needed project. As you know, in that area of the State there is a lot of boating, and fishing activity. Of course a great deal of the business in that area depends on this Shrewsbury River.
What the program calls for is the dredging of the channel and a basin. And the people of the communities are going to provide part of the improvement. They are going to remove some bridges and undertake the building of docks and contribute in a large measure to the improvement.
The engineers' report discloses these facts.
Senator HENDRICKSON. It is near Red Bank. It is up around Asbury Park and that part of the State.
Senator SPARKMAN. That is the northeastern part?
I do not think that there is anything I could say to throw any more light on the thing than the engineers' recommendation.
Senator SPARKMAN. I notice on that report the estimated cost to the United States is $363,000, with an annual cost of maintenance of $29,000 in addition to that now required, and that local cooperation is called for to provide planned easements and rights-of-way.
Senator HENDRICKSON. That is right.
Senator SPARKMAN. And cash contributions of $25,000, $33.000, and $27,500.
Senator HENDRICKSON. That is right.
Senator SPARKMAN. It makes a total of $86,000.
Senator HENDRICKSON. It is a total of $85,500. General Wheeler's report shows $25,000.
Senator SPARKMAN. This shows $25,500. And a benefit-to-cost ratio of 1.39.
Senator HENDRICKSON. We feel it is very important to that area of the State.
Senator SPARKMAN. Colonel Moore, I assume this has the Budget approval by reason of the statement being before us.
Colonel MOORE. Yes, sir; the Bureau of the Budget has advised there would be no objection to submission of the report to Congress.
Senator HENDRICKSON. Mr. Chairman, I would like to have my letter to the committee be inserted in the record.
Senator SPARKMAN. It will be so inserted. (The letter is as follows:)
UNITED STATES SENATE,
July 22, 1949. Hon. DENNIS CHAVEZ, Chairman, Committee on Public Works, United States Senate,
Washington, D. C. MY DEAR SENATOR: I support wholeheartedly the recommendation made by Lt. Gen. R. A. Wheeler, Chief of Engineer Corps, relative to the Shrewsbury River, N. J.
I have been given to understand that these recommendations reached the Committee on Public Works of the House of Representatives too late for consideration, and that this report by General Wheeler also includes the recommendation to dredge the various creeks mentioned therein, which had not been included in a previous recommendation.
I respectfully urge that this appropriation to cover this project be included in the river and harbor flood-control bill. With warm personal regards, I am Sincerely yours,
ROBERT C. HENDRICKSON. Senator SPARKMAN. We will be glad to hear from you, Colonel Moore.
Colonel Moore, Mr. Chairman, the report on Shrewsbury River, N. J., as published in House Document No. 285, Eighty-first Congress, is in response to resolutions adopted February 1 and March 5, 1976, by the Committee on Rivers and Harbors of the House of Representatives.
The main stem of Shrewsbury River, a shallow tidal basin in the northeastern part of New Jersey, is formed by the confluence of its North and South Branches. It discharges into the southeastern extremity of Sandy Hook Bay at the base of Sandy Hook, 20 miles south of the Battery in New York City. The North Branch or Navesink River rises near Freehold, N. J. Tributaries within the navigable portion include McClees, Claypit, and Old Fourth Creeks. Blossom Cove is a small indentation on the north side. The main stem of the South Branch, sometimes referred to as the East Branch, is formed by the confluence of Oceanport and Parker Creeks. Other principal tributaries of the South Branch include Little Silver Creek and its tributary, Rumson waterway, on the westerly side, and Pleasure Bay and Blackberry Creek on the easterly side.
The area commercially tributary to Shrewsbury River consists of the concomitant section of Monmouth County, N.J. It is important agriculturally and provides fruit and garden truck. The areas adjacent to Shrewsbury River constitute a well-established summer resort. The permanent population of the communities in the vicinity of
Shrewsbury River was 59,318 in 1940. The population during the summer is greatly increased by vacationists. Fort Hancock, a United States Army Coast Artillery post, is located on Sandy Hook; and Fort Monmouth, an Army Signal Corps post, is located between Oceanport and Parker Creeks at the head of the main stem of the South Branch. Commercial activities along the streams are those pertaining to construction, repair, servicing, and storage of recreational craft; receipt of sea foods and riprap; retail trade; and catering to vacationists and the transient recreational-craft trade.
The existing project for Shrewsbury River provides for a channel 12 feet deep and 300 feet wide from deep water in Sandy Hook Bay to a point 600 feet south of the railroad bridge at Highlands, a distance of 2.2 miles; thence 9 feet deep and generally 150 feet wide. suitably widened at bends, in the South Branch to the Branch port Avenue Bridge in the city of Long Branch, a distance of 6.8 miles: and for a channel in the North Branch 6 feet deep and 150 feet wide to Red Bank, a distance of 6.1 miles. The project has been completed at a cost, to June 30, 1947, of $502,874 for new work, including $36,311 of contributed funds, and $247,483 for maintenance, a total of $750,357. The latest approved estimate of cost for annual maintenance is $15,000. The Federal sea wall at Fort Hancock on Sandy Hook extends along the ocean shore to a point south of the highway bridge over Shrewsbury River at Highlands. Local interests, including the State of New Jersey, are extending this protection 9,000 feet southward.
Water-borne commerce of Shrewsbury River during the 14-year period 1931 to 1944, inclusive, ranged from a maximum of 75,914 tons in 1942 to zero tonnage in 1943 and averaged 19,139 tons annually for the period. No commercial traffic has been reported since 1941. Commodities involved were mainly riprap, and lesser amounts of commercial sea foods.
Vessel traffic on the Shrewsbury River system consisted of barges and tugs, motor-driven fishing vessels, and large numbers of recreational craft both locally based and visiting. Commercial traffic in 1939, before wartime restrictions limited the use of small craft, consisted of 93 round trips by barges with drafts ranging from 7 to 9 feet, 875 by motor vessels with drafts from 2 to 4 feet, and 1,47+ be bateaux. It is reported that about 700 locally based and 1,000 visiting recreational craft use the river during the summer. Several privately owned seaplanes use the North Branch during the summer. Important boat races and regattas are held in the North Branch.
Fifteen boatyards providing storage for 670 small craft are lorated on the river. Ten rowboat liveries also provide some storage and
perform minor repairs. Additional boatyards are under construction Commercial and public terminals along the Shrewsbury River system include 33 units, providing a total of 7,986 feet of berthage and 91 marine railways. Public landing facilities are available at Red Bank. Fair Haven, and Rumson.
Local interests desire modification of the existing project for Shrewsbury River to provide for a channel 9 feet deep and 20 feet wide in the North Branch; a turning and anchorage basin in the North Branch in the vicinity of Red Bank; dredging of Blossom Core, an area west of Coopers Bridge at Red Bank, and Rumson waterway: nd for dredging of channels in McClees, Claypit, Oceanport, Parker, Blackberry, and Little Silver Creeks.
They state that the present width of channel in the vicinity of Red lank is inadequate for safe turning and maneuvering of the large umber of boats which frequent the area during the boating season nd that no anchorage with adequate depth is available in that locality. During the boating season the major portion of the local recreational raft are moored along the channel, thereby creating a hazard to naviation. Improvement of the several creeks is desired to provide suitble depths for boats of property owners in those localities and addijonal safe harbor facilities for visiting craft and additional local raft which would be attracted by the improvement. They point out hat existing adverse conditions in Oceanport and Parker Creeks have een caused largely by silting of channels resulting from reclamation f land for Fort Monmouth and by the discharge of sewage from be fort into the streams. They claim that improvement of Oceanort and Parker Creeks would restore recreational use of the waters or civilian and military personnel, aid in mosquito and malaria conrol, revive commercial-fishing and recreational-boating activities, and vermit water transportation of coal and other materials to Fort fonmouth,
The district engineer concludes that provision of a turning basin nd anchorage in the North Branch at Red Bank and channels in laypit, Oceanport, and Little Silver Creeks are warranted and that Federal participation in the improvement is justified by resulting genral benefits. The district and division engineers concur in recomsending that the existing project for Shrewsbury River, N. J., be nodified to provide for: (1) A turning basin and anchorage at the pper end of the existing 6-foot project channel in the North Branch t Red Bank, 6 feet deep at mean low water and about 19 acres in xtent; (2) a channel in Claypit Creek, 6 feet deep at mean low water nd 100 feet wide, extending from the 6-foot contour in the North Branch to the head of the creek, a distance of about 1 mile; (3) a hannel in Oceanport Creek, 6 feet deep at mean low water, 100 feet Fide, and 2 miles long, extending from the existing 9-foot project hannel in the South Branch to the New York & Long Branch Railvad bridge; and (4) a channel in Little Silver Creek, 6 feet deep at nean low water, 100 feet wide, and 1.6 miles long, extending from he 9-foot project channel in the South Branch to the Seven Bridge Load Bridge; subject to certain conditions of local cooperation.
The Board of Engineers for Rivers and Harbors concurs in the con:lusion of the reporting officers that the proposed improvement is ustified by the general public benefits. The Board accordingly recimmends that the existing project for Shrewsbury River, N. J., be nodified to provide for: (a) A turning basin and anchorage in the vicinity of Red Bank, 6 feet deep and about 19 acres in area; (6) a hannel in Claypit Creek, 6 feet deep and 100 feet wide from the 6-foot urse in the North Branch to the head of the creek, a distance of about 1.0 mile; (c) a channel in Oceanport Creek, 6 feet deep, 100 feet wide, and 2.0 miles long from the improved channel in the South Branch to the New York & Long Branch Railroad bridge; and (d) a channel in Little Silver Creek, 6 feet deep, 100 feet wide, and 1.6 miles long from the improved channel in the South Branch to the Seven Bridge Road Bridge, all generally in accordance with the plan of the district