‘Overgrown Sand Box:’ Meet the man who’s moving sand to protect his community from Lake Ontario

Local News

SANDY POND, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — Brian Wallis is one of the few people roaming Sandy Island Beach State Park this time of year.

Wallis and his team from BDS Construction have been hired to dredge the channel between Sandy Pond and Lake Ontario.

Thousands of tons of sand pushed in by the high water over the years is being moved to stabilize the dune barrier protecting the shoreline.

Sandy Island Beach State Park is one of 20 sites New York State has chosen to dredge, to fight back against what Governor Andrew Cuomo calls the new normal of high water levels.

Dredging locations include:

  • Oswego County: Sandy Pond Inlet, Salmon River/Port Ontario
  • Niagara County: Wilson, Olcott Harbor
  • Orleans County: Oak Orchard Harbor, Johnson Creek
  • Monroe County: Sandy Creek, Braddock Bay, Long Pond Outlet, Irondequoit Bay
  • Wayne County: Port Bay, Blind Sodus Bay, Bear Creek Harbor, Pultneyville, East Bay
  • Cayuga County:  Little Sodus Bay
  • Jefferson County: Clayton French Creek Marina, Henderson “The Cut”
  • St. Lawrence County: Ogdensburg “City Front Channel,” Morristown Navigation Channel

Each dredging project is planned to be completed no more than four months from the following start date:

  • April 2020: Blind Sodus Bay
  • September 2020: East Bay and North Sandy Pond Inlet
  • October 2020: Braddock Bay, Pultneyville and Little Sodus Bay
  • April 2021: Sandy Creek
  • June 2021: Olcott Harbor, Oak Orchard Harbor and Wilson
  • July 2021: Irondequoit Bay, Long Pond Outlet, Bear Creek Harbor, Henderson “The Cut,” Johnson Creek, Salmon River/Port Ontario, Ogdensburg “City Front” Channel, Morristown Navigation Channel and Clayton French Creek Marine.

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