The bouys are nearly standing still. So are the floating barriers. The silt fences are up but no workers are moving the earth underneath the murky waters of Stevenson Creek.
Once again, efforts to clean the estuary have stopped.
Paul Howard Construction Company was fired from the Stevenson Creek Aquatic Restoration project for not meeting the terms of the contract in November 2012, said Amanda Ellison, Army Corps of Engineers spokeswoman.
She would not go into details about the dismissal because of possible litigation.
Crews from the construction company removed 12,493 cubic yards of material before they were dismissed, Ellison said. They were expected to remove 105,000.
This is not the first time a contractor failed to complete this project to restore about 27.92 acres of the wetland near the North Greenwood neighborhood.
SEEK Enterprises of Brandon was fired from the project in February 2011. The company wanted more money to complete the work after discovering the creek was more contaminated than first thought.
SEEK was unable to complete the project without more money to pay for increased safety and environmental protections, causing the dredging to come to a halt. SEEK said they were originally uninformed of the water’s toxicity, making it difficult for them to then complete the project under the original terms.
Then, after a prolonged standstill, the Army Corps of Engineers awarded the contract to Paul Howard Construction Company in October 2011.
At some point the project that would improve the habitat for manatees, fish and other wildlife will be complete.
“We do not have an established timeline at present, but we continue to work with the Surety to ensure this project is completed,” Ellison said in an email.
Stevenson Creek Restoration Project: http://www.clearwater-fl.com/gov/depts/pwa/engin/projects/stevensoncreekestuaryrestoration.asp