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U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to begin work on new Soo Lock in 2019

The following article was released November 21 by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Detroit District. Authorization for the complete funding of a second Poe-sized lock at Sault Ste. Marie, Mich. was signed into law on October 23.

DETROIT - The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Detroit District, announced the New Soo Lock project in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan will receive $32,388,000 in the fiscal year 2019 work plan.

The funds appropriated to the New Soo Lock project will be used to initiate deepening of the upstream approach channel. The funds are sufficient to complete design and allow construction of the upstream channel deepening to begin. Efforts towards deepening the upstream approach channel are the next big step in construction of the new lock.

"Appropriating funds for the New Soo Lock project in this year's work plan demonstrates the federal government's commitment to providing resiliency in the Great Lakes Navigation System," said Lt. Col. Greg Turner, district engineer. "It is fantastic news for the Great Lakes and our nation."

The next opportunity for funding to complete construction of the upstream channel deepening and continue the design of the upstream approach walls and new lock chamber is the 2020 President's Budget.

Contingent on efficient funding, the New Soo Lock project, estimated to cost nearly $1 billion, could be completed in as few as seven years.

The Soo Locks are situated on the St. Marys River at Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan and allow vessels to transit the 21-foot elevation change at the St. Marys Falls Canal. This New Soo Lock project would construct a second Poe-sized lock (110' by 1,200') on the site of the existing Davis and Sabin Locks. The Soo Locks are nationally critical infrastructure and the reliability of this critical node in the Great Lakes Navigation System is essential to U.S. manufacturing and national security.

More information about the New Soo Lock project is available online.


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