July 12, 2017

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Geosyntec Receives Environmental Award at Western Dredging Association's Annual Meeting

Geosyntec was awarded the 2017 Western Dredging Associations (WEDA) Environmental Excellence Award for Environmental Dredging for project work on the Onondaga Lake Restoration project in Syracuse, New York.

Project team members were Honeywell International; Parsons Corporation; Anchor QEA, LLC; O'Brien & Gere; Geosyntec Consultants; Sevenson Environmental Services; Infrastructure Alternatives, Inc.; de Maximis, Inc.; and Brown & Sanford Consultants.

According to the WEDA, the Onondaga Lake project is one of the largest restoration projects in North America. The multi-year project was conceived by some premier experts from academia, industry and the public, and involved several decades of planning, investigations, engineering and construction, before coming to fruition.

Some 2.2 million cubic yards (MCY) of dredged material were removed from the lake bottom and pumped over 4 miles to an upland sediment consolidation area (SCA). The material was then placed within 979 geotextile tubes, stacked up to 5 layers high, over the 55-acre SCA. Approximately 475 acres of cap was then placed over the lake bottom including placement of 1.6 MCY hydraulically, and another 1.5 MCY mechanically. Specialized amendments (over 14 million pounds of granular activated carbon, and 14,000 tons of siderite) were incorporated into the cap layers to provide additional sorption and retardation properties. Approximately 37 acres of the lake bottom received targeted habitat restoration materials and planting. These innovations resulted in technological advancements that were once thought to be unattainable. They combine innovative dredging and capping designs with long-term habitat restoration initiatives, which have led to an optimized, environmentally protective solution, with great economic benefits to the lake and surrounding communities.

Geosyntec's Notable Accomplishments

Geosyntec's analysis of the laboratory and field data from the test fill demonstrated that the laboratory data could be used to predict the measured settlements of the test plot constructed over the Solvay waste bed. This demonstration supported the technical feasibility of constructing the SCA on the proposed waste bed. Geosyntec also led discussions among stakeholders that allowed the New York State DEC to consider the sediments deposited in the SCA equivalent in status to a non-mixed waste landfill. This status allows flexibility in the approach for designing the SCA lining system which will afford opportunities for significant cost savings.

The WEDA during its annual conference in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada presented Environmental Excellence Awards in three categories: Environmental Dredging, Navigation Dredging, and Mitigation and Adaptation to Climate Change.

More Information

For more information regarding the project, visit: Sediment Containment Area at Onondaga Lake
For more information on sediment removal or sediment containment, contact Jay Beech at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
To learn more about Jay see his profile at: https://www.geosyntec.com/people/j-f-beech