Casa Sirena Project Update
The replacement of the Casa Sirena Hotel and Lobster Trap Restaurant is moving forward, albeit slowly. The replacement of these decrepit buildings with a new Hyatt House Hotel and adjoining restaurant are part of a three-project plan at the end of Peninsula Road. The marinas will be rebuilt and the protective rock revetment will be replaced at the same time the hotel and restaurant are rebuilt. Unfortunately, COVID-19 has stalled the development process by about 18 months. The good news is that the hotel developer has committed to begin the project by the end of 2021.
The demolition and rebuild of these major projects simultaneously will take a herculean coordinating effort. As a result, there are joint agreements that are being executed regarding construction phasing and coordination, as well as agreements regarding funding and responsibilities for shared space. It is anticipated that these agreements, as well as the hotel project ground lease, will go to the Board of Supervisors in October 2021, and demolition will begin shortly thereafter.
The demolition of the hotel structures must occur before the other two projects can get underway. The structures must be removed before the rock revetment can be replaced, so that construction equipment can get to the shoreline to remove and replace the rocks. While it is feasible to handle the rock revetment replacement from water, it would significantly increase the cost of the project and would create a tremendous negative impact to the recreational water use in the Harbor. Correspondingly, the rock revetment must be completed before the marina rebuild can proceed.
It is anticipated that hotel/restaurant abatement and demolition will take four months and then the revetment removal and replacement will take six months. After the revetment is replaced, it will take roughly 20 months to open the hotel/restaurant.
If all goes as planned, the new hotel/restaurant is scheduled to open in mid-2024.
Fisherman's Wharf Project Update
Update posted 8/9/2021
The proposed project for Fisherman’s Wharf has been withdrawn. The developer continues to be interested in developing the site, but understands that the Harbor Department was highlighting this area in the Harbor visioning process before we proceed with searching for a development.
The Harbor Vision identified some exciting ideas for this site, including a mixed-use project with a public market building concentrating on local food products and merchandise, a civic anchor which ties to the Channel Islands, some tasteful commercial, possibly a boutique hotel and integrated residential, and plenty of open space for active uses and events.
It is anticipated that the Request for Proposal for this site and the undeveloped site along Harbor Boulevard (parcel X-3) will be out by the end of 2021.
Whale's Tail Project Update
Update posted 12/2/2020
We are currently seeking a developer/operator for the Whale’s Tail Restaurant. This site is also being discussed in the Harbor Visioning Process, and it is possible that this site could change or expand uses including hospitality or other visitor-serving uses. The development/operating agreement will be a standard ground lease, where the developer/operator will fund the renovations in exchange for a long-term lease.
Jetty and Breakwater Project at the Channel Islands Harbor
Much Needed Repair Work Starts at Channel Islands Harbor Entrance
Update posted 5/10/21
Aged jetties and the offshore breakwater at the Channel Islands Harbor entrance will receive much needed repairs in the coming months.
The Los Angeles District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has funded a project to conduct repairs to two parallel entrance jetties and the protective offshore breakwater near the entrance of the Harbor. This week, Connolly Pacific mobilized equipment – a crane-equipped barge, support vessels, and a storage barge – and the project is underway.
Due to the nature of this project, the Corps, the Harbor Department, and Connolly Pacific continue to coordinate safety concerns. For public safety, measures are incorporated including posted signs and limiting access within construction site. Also, the Harbor Patrol and the U.S. Coast Guard are assisting in monitoring the working zone to ensure safe navigation in the channel.
Repair work will consist of replacing approximately 30,000 tons of new armor stone and resetting armor stone as needed. Repairs will be conducted by a barge-mounted crane, barges carrying rock, and other various support vessels. The project is estimated to last until mid-September 2021, but could change depending on weather. Work will be conducted from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday thru Saturday, during the life of the project.
Why Is It Needed?
The project is needed to ensure navigational safety and to prevent further degradation of the structural integrity of the jetties and breakwater. If no work were scheduled on the jetties and breakwater, eventual Harbor closures could result, which would result in a loss to recreational and commercial operations. The last time major maintenance was completed was 1996 to address damages from the 1982-83 storm season and the 1994 Northridge earthquake, according to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
“We couldn’t be more pleased that this important project is taking place this year,” said Mark Sandoval, Ventura County Harbor Department Director. “This project is protecting and preserving the Harbor’s recreational and economic value.”
The repair project not only benefits the Channel Islands Harbor, but neighboring communities as well. The detached breakwater serves to suspend littoral transport and create sand trap up coast of the Harbor entrance channel. This material is used to nourish the eroding shoreline down coast from the Port of Hueneme, and provides protection to private, public, and Federal lands from further erosion.
Dredging at the Channel Islands Harbor
Dredging at the Channel Islands Harbor is Complete
Update posted 5/10/21
Navigating the Channel Islands Harbor will continue to be safe and down coast beaches will receive an influx of much-needed sand thanks to a dredging project that is complete.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers started dredging the Channel Islands Harbor in mid-October 2020. Equipment was staged at the Harbor in early October. The dredging project was completed in February 2021.
The hydraulic dredge “H.R. Morris” staged and conducted maintenance dredging of the Channel Islands Harbor entrance on a 24-hour basis. The dredging activity took place in various locations in and around the harbor entrance and sand trap area of Hollywood Beach.
The Army Corps typically dredges every two years, and has done so for decades under legislation that authorized the small craft harbor and sand trap to be built in the early 1960s. The harbor was designed to trap sand to prevent loss to the submarine canyon off of Port Hueneme and to provide dredged material for beach replenishment for downcoast beaches. The replenishment provides vital shore protection for downcoast facilities, including the Naval installations at Port Hueneme and Point Mugu, the Port of Hueneme, the City of Port Hueneme and our own Silver Strand beach.
It is estimated approximately 2 million cubic yards of sand was pumped from the harbor down to the beach at Port Hueneme, which erodes over time due to normal sand migration along the coast. The last time the harbor was dredged was December 2018 to February 2019.
Dredging Project Made Possible with Federal Funds
Congress allocated $13 million in federal funding to the Army Corps to complete the dredging project at Channel Islands Harbor. Additional matching federal funds are allocated through the Navy budget.
Ventura County Harbor Department Director Mark Sandoval said funding for the dredging projects couldn’t have been made possible without the support of Congresswoman Julia Brownley, whose district includes the Channel Islands Harbor.
“The Harbor Department would like to thank Congresswoman Brownley, who has steadfastly fought alongside local leaders to secure funding for these critical projects in Ventura County,” Director Sandoval said. “This project is vital to the beaches down coast from the Channel Islands Harbor which are subject to continual erosion, and to maintaining safe navigation in and out of the Channel Islands Harbor.”