Notice to Navigators: Illinois River

Brandon Road Interbasin Project - Engineered Channel Layout -
Final Draft Engineering Evaluation Report


On Monday, February 7th, a final draft report will be forwarded to you for your awareness and review on the recommended Engineered Channel layout for the Brandon Road Interbasin Project.  This report, called an Engineering Evaluation Report, captures the process the team undertook since March 2021 to evaluate and develop a recommended, geometric layout of the Engineered Channel.  A two week period, February 7th through 21st,  will be provided for you to review this final draft report.  Any comments are to be submitted by close of business on Monday, February 21st.

The following is an excerpt from the Engineering Evaluation Report that summarizes the purpose of the report.

This Engineering Evaluation Report documents the process and steps taken to optimize the recommended layout for the Engineered Channel.  From March to December 2021, the design team worked to optimize and define the geometric layout of the Engineered Channel.   Design team focused on the layout for the Engineered Channel early on as its layout is key to the location and performance of all deterrents authorized within the feasibility study while accounting for future adaptive measures.  Recommended layout of the Engineered Channel will be provided to the USACE Coastal and Hydraulics Laboratory, Engineer Research & Development Center in the spring of 2022 for them to incorporate and analyze it within two physical models.  Models include a flushing lock physical model at a 1:25 scale and a downstream approach physical model at a 1:100 scale.   Once analysis is completed on both physical models, development of plans and specifications,  for the greater project will start.

The full extents Engineered Channel layout as identified within the feasibility report has a significant construction cost.  Feasibility report for the Engineered Channel, absent of any deterrents, was estimated at a 2020 first costs of $452,089,00.  This equates to roughly 52% of the total project costs, $841,810,000.  Additionally, operation and maintenance costs for each deterrent is directly impacted by the width of the Engineered Channel.  Office of Management and Budget Circular A-131 requires Federal agencies to apply value engineering studies on all new projects that are at least $5 million in construction costs.  Given the Engineered Channel layout was the largest and most expensive component of the project, it was extensively evaluated early on for potential design improvements leading to reduction in overall project costs.

Also, USACE plans to hold our next Navigation and USCG workshop the last week of February.  Right now, the afternoon of Wednesday, February 28th is being targeted.    A calendar invite for this virtual workshop will be forth coming.

Please forward any points of contact that I may have missed on this email distribution.

Thank you,

Project Engineer – Brandon Road Interbasin Project
Inland Navigation Design Center
US Army Corps of Engineers
Clock Tower Building  |  Rock Island, Illinois  61204-2004
Office: 309.794.5140
Cell: 309.207.0526