In coordination with the City of Warrenton, the Port intends to commission a study of the Vera Slough tide gate, located at the north end of the airport near the New Youngs Bay Bridge. The Tide Gate Study is the first step in addressing the critical issue of rising water levels at the Warrenton-Astoria Regional Airport. Tide gates are devices used to control tidal river water; water flows through the gate when the tide is in one direction, and the gate closes automatically when the tide is in the opposite direction. The Port strongly suspects that the existing gate has contributed to chronically high water levels, causing flooding, erosion of infrastructure, groundwater intrusion, and significant obstacles to the industrial development necessary for a financially independent airport.
The Study will be funded through a grant award from the Oregon Business Development Department. The objective will be to complete the background research, permitting pre-requisites, and study of feasible tide gate designs necessary for the subsequent permitting and complete tide gate design work, after which the Port will pursue the financing necessary to replace and/or modify the tide gate. Concurrent with – and complementary to – the Port’s Study, the city of Warrenton will be working on a comprehensive hydrology study of the entire Warrenton levee system (which includes the airport) that will provide further data to assist in the Port’s study. The Study constitutes the initial phase in a project for which the overall goal is to reduce water levels at the airport and protect critical infrastructure.
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