July 14, 2017
The National Park Service (NPS) has prepared an Environmental Assessment (EA) for Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore (National Lakeshore) to analyze the expected environmental impacts of implementing a proposal to stabilize the shoreline at the South Manitou Island Lighthouse Complex. The NPS is seeking public comment on this EA. The purpose of the project is to protect the lighthouse complex from shoreline retreat and loss. Long-term erosion of the existing stone revetment and storm events over the past couple of years has resulted in the existing shoreline becoming increasingly unstable and eroding considerably in some locations. Shoreline stabilization failure and erosion are serious concerns for this nationally significant lighthouse complex, which is a Historic Landmark District. The goals of the project, therefore, are emergency stabilization of 295 linear feet of shoreline as well as supplemental stabilization of an additional 680 feet shoreline. The EA presents and evaluates alternatives for stabilizing the shoreline and protecting the lighthouse complex.
The EA analyzes two alternatives: the no action alternative and one action alternative. The no action alternative would include the continuation of current management, which would involve no new shoreline stabilization efforts. The action alternative would be implemented in separate phases. Initially, emergency shoreline stabilization in the central portion of the overall project area would repair and reconstruct the armor stone revetment along 295 linear feet of the shoreline adjacent to the historic fog signal building. Future phases of work would include supplemental stabilization in the areas north and south of the emergency stabilization. Supplemental stabilization to the south would repair and reconstruct the stone revetment along the remaining 130 linear feet of existing revetment. Supplemental stabilization to the north would restore approximately 550 linear feet of a more natural living shoreline for increased stability. The resulting living shoreline would consist of a combination of stone breakwaters and imported sand.
The action alternative is the NPS preferred alternative because it would best protect the nationally-significant lighthouse complex from the threat of erosion. The alternatives would result in impacts on coastal resources (including wetlands), special status species, cultural resources, and visitor use and experience associated with construction activities and shoreline stabilization techniques.
NPS encourages you to become involved with the process and submit your comments on the shoreline stabilization project. The EA will be available for public review and comment for seven days from July 25 through August 1. You can find more information about the project and submit your comments online at www.parkplanning.nps.gov/slbe. Comments may also be mailed to the National Lakeshore at: Superintendent, Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, 9922 Front Street, Empire, MI 49630.
The NPS requests that you provide your comments by August 1, 2017 in order for them to be considered. For more information, please contact Lee Jameson, Facility Manager, at 231-326-4770.