McNally Construction has won a contract for the next step in the renovation of Digby’s wharf.

Digby Port Harbour Association accepted the company’s bid of $614,000 to dredge the area where the middle ell was, drive the metal pilings and install the gangway and floating dock system.

RJ McIsaac, Dexter Construction and Harbour Development also bid on the project. Harbour manager Jeff Sunderland said work should begin within a few weeks and he expects five large steel pilings to arrive on the wharf within the next couple of weeks.

McNally will use a large crane and barge and a small harbour tug to remove approximately 4,000 cubic metres of harbour bottom and debris from the site.

A special vibrating attachment will be added to the crane to drive pilings for the floating docks. The last few metres of each piling may require the diesel hammer to drive them in. McNally is considering two options for dealing with the old pilings from the middle ell.

Because they will have a bigger crane on a more stable base than Dexter was able to use on the middle ell, they may be able to pull them right out, or they may dig around them and cut them off.

Sunderland said he doesn’t foresee the work interfering with boat traffic in the harbour. “McNally installed the float system for us last time, so they’re familiar with the port and how busy it is,” he said. “They were good to work with last time and I don’t expect that to be any different this time.”

Completion deadline is March 31 and Sunderland guesses they will need most of that time to finish the project.

“We were extremely pleased with the how the demolition of the middle ell went,” he says. “They were done in half the time we expected and using half the budget.”

McNally’s bid is also about $80,000 under the association’s budget but Sunderland says the breakwater construction will quickly eat up any money saved on this end of the project.

The breakwater is still working its way through the assessment and approval process.

Story by: Jonathan Riley
The Digby County Courier
January 24, 2013