HRE - Hudson Raritan Estuary Ecosystem Restoration

Timeline/Status:  

A Chief of Engineers Report for the Hudson Raritan Estuary (HRE) was signed by Lt. Gen. Todd Semonite on May 26, 2020 making it eligible for congressional authorization.  The Chief's Report recommends 20 ecosystem restoration projects throughout the New York Harbor.

The Corps' New York District and multiple non-federal sponsors commenced six (6) concurrent ecosystem restoration feasibility studies in the 1990s and early 2000s that focused on the restoration of different areas of the harbor estuary:

*       Jamaica Bay, Marine Park and Plumb Beach (Sponsor: New York City Department of Environmental Protection).  
*       Flushing Bay and Creek (Sponsors: New York City Department of Environmental Protection and The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey)
*       Hudson Raritan Estuary (Sponsor: The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey) 
*       HRE – Lower Passaic River (Sponsors: New Jersey Department of Transportation and Environmental Protection)
*       HRE – Hackensack Meadowlands (Sponsor: New Jersey Sports & Exposition Authority [Formerly Hackensack Meadowlands Commission])
*       Bronx River Basin (Sponsors: New York City Department of Environmental Protection and Westchester County, N.Y.)

In an effort to streamline parallel efforts and maximize efficiencies, the six feasibility studies were combined into a larger comprehensive study for the estuary--the Hudson Raritan Estuary Ecosystem Restoration Feasibility Study exemplifying a true multi-agency collaborative effort.

The Recommended Plan includes restoration at 20 individual project locations that will restore a mosaic of 621 acres of habitat that will reduce long-term and large-scale degradation in the Hudson Raritan Estuary. 

The plan includes:
•   Restoration of approximately 381 acres of estuarine wetland habitat (including six miles of tidal channels), 50 acres of freshwater riverine wetland habitat, 27 acres of coastal and maritime forest habitat, 39 acres of shallow water habitat and 52 acres of oyster habitat.
•   Two fish ladders would be installed and three weirs would be modified to re-introduce or expand fish passage (24 miles) and control flow rate and water volume along the Bronx River.
•   A total of 1.6 miles of stream bank and 72 acres of stream bed and channel would be restored.

 

See the HRE Placemat for a summary of the study background and details (costs, habitat acreage, designs) about the 20 recommended sites.

Final Documents Below:

Signed Chief of Engineer’s Report

Signed Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI)

Main Report - Final Integrated Feasibility Report and Environmental Assessment
Appendix A:  Local Sponsor Support Letters
Appendix B:  Ongoing Restoration Efforts
Appendix C:  Engineering
Appendix D:  Plan Formulation
Appendix E:  Benefits
Appendix F:  Regulatory Compliance
Appendix G:  Hazardous, Toxic and Radioactive Waste
Appendix H:  Cultural Resources Documentation
Appendix I:    Cost Engineering
Appendix J:   Cost Effectiveness and Incremental Cost Analysis
Appendix K: Future “Spin-Off” Feasibility Studies
Appendix L:   Monitoring and Adaptive Management Plan
Appendix M:  Real Estate Plan    
Appendix N:  Public Comments from Draft FR/EA

March 16, 2020:  

The Final Integrated Feasibility Report & Environmental Assessment (FR/EA) and proposed Report of the Chief of Engineers for the Hudson Raritan Estuary Ecosystem Restoration Feasibility Study underwent State and Federal Agency review from March 16, 2020 through April 15, 2020 as required by the Flood Control Act of 1944.  Comments received during this time period were addressed and the Draft Report of the Chief of Engineers and Final Integrated FR/EA were then finalized.

Draft Chief of Engineer’s Report

Unsigned Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI)

Main Report - Final Integrated Feasibility Report and Environmental Assessment

April 19, 2017:  

Formal presentations from Public Information Meetings held at the Hackensack Meadowlands Environmental Center on April 19th and Jamaica Bay NPS Ryan Visitor Center on April 25th are available for download by clicking the linked text.

April 6, 2017:  

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers hosted the first public information session on April 6, 2017 to share information regarding the Hudson Raritan Estuary Ecosystem Restoration Feasibility Study and the Feasibility Report and Environmental Assessment to gather feedback from the public.  The posters and formal presentation from this meeting can be downloaded in PDF form below.

Two additional public Information meetings occurred  on April 19, 2017 at the Meadowlands Environmental Center (Two DeKorte Park Plaza, Lyndhurst N.J.) and April 25, 2017 at Floyd Bennett Field, Ryan Visitor Center (50 Aviation Road, Brooklyn N.Y.).  Both meetings had two sessions at 1 p.m.  and at 6 p.m.  

 

April 5, 2017:  

 

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, New York District announces the extension of the review period for the Draft Integrated Feasibility Report and Environmental Assessment (FR/EA) for the HRE Ecosystem Restoration Feasibility Study for an additional 15 days. 
The comment period closed May 1, 2017.

 

February 27, 2017:  

The Draft Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) and Draft Integrated Feasibility Report and Environmental Assessment (Draft FR/EA) for the Hudson-Raritan Estuary (HRE) Ecosystem Restoration Feasibility Study is out for 45 day public review and are posted below.

 

Additional Information and Comments:

To see notice of availability, click here.

 

Questions regarding the Draft FR/EA should be directed to:

Ms. Lisa Baron
Project Manager
New York District Corps of Engineers  
Attn: CENAN-PP-C
26 Federal Plaza
New York, NY 10278-0090  
Phone: (917) 790-8306
E-mail:  lisa.a.baron@usace.army.mil

Comments should be sent to HRE_FREA_Comments@usace.army.mil

Study reports: 

 

Draft Integrated Feasibility Report and Integrated Environmental Assessment 

Appendix A:     Local Sponsor Support Letters
Appendix B:     Ongoing Restoration Efforts
Appendix C:     Fish Passage Opportunities
Appendix D:     Engineering
Appendix E:     Alternatives Development
                             E-1: Jamaica Bay
                             E-2: Jamaica Bay Marsh Islands
                             E-3: Flushing Creek
                             E-4: Bronx River
                             E-5: Newark Bay, Hackensack and Lower Passaic
                             E-6: Small-Scale Oyster Restoration 

Appendix F:     Essential Fish Habitat Assessment
Appendix G:    Regulatory Agency Coordination - Protected Species and Rare Habitats; Fish and..
Appendix H:    Hazardous, Toxic, Radioactive Waste
Appendix I:     Cultural Resources Documentation
Appendix J:    Coastal Zone Management
Appendix K:   Tentatively Selected Plan Summary Sheets
Appendix L:    Cost Engineering
Appendix M:   Cost Effectiveness and Incremental Cost Analysis
Appendix N:   Future New Phase Spin-off Feasibility Study Sites
Appendix O:   Monitoring and Adaptive Management Plan
Appendix P:   Real Estate Plan
Appendix Q:   Programmatic Section 404 (b)(1) Evaluation
Appendix R:   Draft FONSI

For more information, please read the Fact Sheet or contact the Project Manager if you have any questions regarding the Study.