Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Port Seeks Bids for Barge Fleeting Area

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Port Seeks Bids for Barge Fleeting Area

Article excerpt

CATOOSA - Officials with the Tulsa Port of Catoosa on Thursday took a step toward increasing capacity at the facility.

The City of Tulsa-Rogers County Port Authority unanimously approved advertising for bids on the first phase of a barge fleeting area south of the port.

The authority also approved requesting bids on the next phase of the dock rehabilitation project.

"The ongoing effort is to build capacity, as we do not want to ever be limited by a lack of parking," said David Page, chairman of the port authority.

The first-phase barge parking project, estimated to cost $1.5 million, will be to create an artificial stream and wetland to replace wetland destroyed to construct the barge area. Crews will also build a road between the fleeting area and the southwest corner of the port property, where 1.5 million cubic yards of soil will be deposited, said David Yarbrough, port deputy director.

Construction must begin by May 1, Yarbrough said.

"The deadline is driven by a study done last year for the presence of the American burying beetle," Yarbrough said.

Habitat around the port supports the endangered insect.

No beetles were discovered during the study, which was conducted during 2014, Yarbrough said.

"We have a year after the study period to start work," Yarbrough said. "If we miss this window, it costs us another $10,000 and costs us another year."

The fleeting area is needed because officials anticipate more shipping on the McClellan-Kerr Arkansas River Navigation over the next decade, Page said.

"The analogy we like to use is if you look at Brookside and said, 'We are going to keep building restaurants there,' but when it comes time to park, it is a challenge," Page said, referring to a popular area for restaurants in Tulsa.

Port officials plan to create a parking area 2,400 feet long, 500 feet wide and 12 feet deep. …

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