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feet wide for about 0.55 of a mile, thence 15 feet deep to the junction of the branches, a West Branch channel 15 feet deep to head of navigation, an anchorage basin 18 feet deep on the west side of the entrance channel, and an anchorage basin 8 feet deep on the east side of the entrance channel.
That is the basin, marked in green, which we will recommend to be eliminated, because it has not yet been constructed, and in place thereof one taken which is farther north.
The project is practically complete except that no work has been done on the 8-foot anchorage basin.
Commerce of the harbor averaged about 486,000 tons per year. A large number of fishing boats and many transient craft use the harbor.
Stamford has a population of about 70,000 and acts as a trading center for 15,000 to 18,000 people in adjacent areas. Its industries manufacture machinery, hardware, marine engines, motorboats, electrical goods, and chemicals.
The Board of Engineers for Rivers and Harbors recommends the modification of the existing project for Stamford Harbor to the extent of eliminating the 8-foot anchorage authorized but not constructed in the outer harbor and substituting therefore the dredging of an anchorage basin adjacent to the East Branch channel, 8 feet deep at mean low water and about 4.2 acres in area.
The estimated cost of the new construction for the new 8-foot anchorage is $45,000, or about $29,000 more than the basin which will be eliminated and has not been constructed.
The improvement is recommended subject to the condition that responsible local agencies furnish assurances satisfactory to the Secretary of War that they will provide free of cost to the United States all necessary lands, easements, rights-of-way, and spoil-disposal areas for new work and subsequent maintenance when and as required; construct concurrently the necessary bulkheads, piers, landing platforms, and service facilities which shall be open to all on equal terms; and hold and save the United States free from damages resulting from the improvement. The estimated cost to local interests for these items is $50,000.
The cost to the United States for new work is $15,000.
The Governor has been consulted and is in favor thereof. The report has not as yet been to the Bureau of the Budget.
Mr. GEELAN. Colonel, has the Corps of Engineers taken into consideration the necessity for improving Stamford Harbor in the event that the United Nations Organization locates in the proposed Greenwich-Stamford area?
Colonel FERINGA. I do not think we have in this report. If there is need for any further deepening that should be considered, and I believe that could best be done by a review resolution adopted by this committee.
Mr. GEELAN. That should be something that should be kept in mind in the event the United Nations Organization establishes its permanent headquarters there.
The CHAIRMAN. How far from there would it be?
Mr. GEELAN. The proposed site would be probably 5 miles inland from Stamford Harbor and running east and west between Stamford and Greenwich.
Mr. GOSSELIN. I should like to make a statement, Mr. Chairman. The CHAIRMAN. Very well, sir.
STATEMENT OF ARTHUR H. GOSSELIN, CHAIRMAN, CONNECTICUT
PORT SURVEY COMMISSION
Mr. GOSSELIN. The State of Connecticut is giving more and more consideration to all of their harbors from a marine basin standpoint and from the standpoint of other developments, and will, I am sure, do their part in defraying part of the expense to improve these harbors of the State.
DELAWARE RIVER, BILES CREEK, PA. Colonel FERINGA. We have one more report slated for today, Judge, and that is Delaware River, Biles Creek.
The CHAIRMAN. How far from Philadelphia is that? Colonel FERINGA. It is opposite Trenton. The report on Delaware River, between Philadelphia, Pa., and Trenton, N. J., is submitted in response to resolution adopted by the Rivers and Harbors Committee in the House on April 24, 1945.
This report concerns the improvement of Biles Creek, a tributary of the Delaware River. The shore base of the Pennsylvania Maritime Academy operated by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, occupies a point of land on the south side of the mouth of or downstream end of Biles Creek.
This school has been in operation for the past 50 years and has been very successful. When completed, the installation will represent an investment by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania of $5,500,000. The Federal Government contributes some substantial support for the Academy in funds and service in the interest of the merchant marine.
Included with the services furnished by the United States is a ship 197 feet long, 34-foot beam, and a draft of 19 feet loaded, used in the training of students.
There is no terminal or landing facility in Biles Creek locality. The Board was interested in this project because it wanted to make certain that it was not merely a wartime installation which would be abandoned.
Therefore, we sent one of our engineers up to visit the site, and he determined that the school had been in operation for the past 50 years and the United States had made available and would continue to make available a Coast Guard cutter for the training of the students.
The project is recommended in order that the ship can be anchored close to the school and used to advantage in the training of the students.
Mr. DONDERO. What is the cost, Colonel ?
Mr. DONDERO. I am satisfied without any further showing. You are serving a school and young people, especially these students, and it ought to be done.
Colonel FERINGA. The improvement authorized by Congress between Philadelphia and Trenton, which this would modify, provides for a channel 28 feet deep from Allegheny Avenue in Philadelphia to the Pennsylvania Railroad bridge, and then 25 feet to the Municipal Marine Terminal at Trenton. Biles Creek is a tidal waterway separating Biles Island on the west bank of the Delaware River from the Pennsylvania mainland. The State authority in charge of the Pennsylvania Maritime Academy requests an adequate anchorage for the training ship in the west margin of this ship channel opposite the Academy site.
Obviously, the ship cannot be anchored in the ship channel because there is a whole lot of traffic going up and down there.
The authority points out that the institution has trained over 1,100 young men to qualify as officers for the merchant marine during its 56 years of service.
The Board recommends modification of the existing project to provide in the west margin of the ship channel opposite the shore base of the Pennsylvania Maritime Academy near the mouth of Biles Creek, Pa., an anchorage 22 feet deep with a bottom width of 100 feet and a length of 400 feet along the west or landward side, and 800 feet along the ship channel.
The cost to the United States for new. work is $54,000, and in this case, we could not determine the benefits in dollars and cents, but the Department is of the opinion that the interest of the general public in the service rendered by the Academy warrants the provision at public expense of an anchorage adjacent to the Academy shore base.
The Governor is in favor thereof, and the report just went to the Bureau of the Budget last week. We have not heard but I have no doubt as to that.
The CHAIRMAN. They will have no objection, I am sure.
Mr. DONDERO. What is the meaning of the letters at the top of each report, SPEWR?
Colonel FERINGA. That is a departmental symbol indicating that the report is a navigation report and that it was written by the Board.
That concludes everything we had planned to offer today.
Mr. DONDERO. Colonel, I am interested in one comment that you made in connection with a number of these projects. That is this: That the Governor of the State approves of this project. Is that a new custom?
Colonel FERINGA. That is in accordance with the last River and Harbor Act and also the Flood Control Act. In the first paragraph of the act it states that we have to send all our reports to the governors of the States concerned for their comment.
Mr. DONDERO. I heartily approve of that, because it gives notice to the Chief Executive of the State where the project might affect the State and the people in that State.
Colonel FERINGA. Yes, sir. It also requires that west of the ninetyseventh meridian or any of the waters which originate west of the ninety-seventh meridian, all the governors of the States through which that water might flow will have to be consulted, and also the Bureau of Reclamation.
Mr. DONDERO. Is that the one that runs down through the Dakotas? Colonel FERINGA. Yes, sir. So you might have a project on the Mississippi River, and we would then get the opinion of many of the western governors; and also the departments concerned; I suppose the young lady from the Department of the Interior is here for the
purpose of picking up items of interest to the Department of the Interior.
Mr. PETERSON of Georgia. I have been wondering what would be the objection to amending that act in this bill, providing that such approval from the governors would not be necessary from some such a point on east. I do not think we have any issue of that kind in the eastern part of the country.
The CHAIRMAN. The law does not require that. It is just in courtesy, to see whether they want to object to it.
Mr. PETERSON of Georgia. "You could not eliminate that for the eastern part ?
Colonel FERINGA. I might say that the governors in the East and the Southeast especially, are very prompt in their replies. I believe that they keep more or less abreast of the work done by our district engineers when they investigate the reports, and we usually get very quick response.
In some reports, however, the 90-day interim would be restrictive especially when a report is being rushed in order to be considered by this committee.
But all in all, I think that consideration by the governors has been intelligent and constructive.
The CHAIRMAN. Colonel, you say this completes the program set for today. Now, is there anything set for tomorrow that we can consider today?
Colonel FERINGA. We have the Sacramento River.
Colonel FERINGA. It was not planned to bring them up today or tomorrow, but we could go right along to some of these projects such as the Texas projects set for Thursday.
The CHAIRMAN. I do not think there will be anyone up here from Texas, will there?
Colonel FERINGA. I am inclined to think, sir, that if we go ahead, you might find that someone will come in later and say he wants it to be heard all over again.
(Whereupon, at 3 o'clock, the committee went into executive session.)