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DEQ seeks comment on modified 401 water quality certification for BNSF railway bridge span replacement project

Accepting comments from January 11, 2022, through February 1, 2022.

The Idaho Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) seeks comment on a modified 401 water quality certification for the BNSF railway bridge span replacement project.

This project is located near the city of Sandpoint in Bonner County (48°15’25.33436″N, 116°31’40.12401″W), at the Pend Oreille Lake outlet and mouth of the Pend Oreille River. BNSF proposes repairs to the existing rail bridge over the Pend Oreille River. BNSF Railway Bridge 0045-000309E (Bridge 3.9E) is located 50 feet east of the new BNSF bridge crossing (Bridge 3.9W), which is currently under construction. The purpose of this project is to replace Spans 64 through 71 (8 spans) and to add cast-in-place concrete bearing blocks to Piers 64 through 71 and the pivot pier (9 spans). Pier work will involve adding the bearing blocks to the top of the existing piers, and adding grout, epoxy, and carbon fiber wrap (Carboshield) to the existing upper portion of piers where they are degraded. Pressure washing will occur over water prior to implementing repairs. Work using grout, epoxy, and carbon fiber wrap will be performed above surface water and will not extend into the water. No in-water work is proposed.

Based on its review of the 401 water quality certification request, the US Coast Guard (USCG) Bridge Permit Application and related project documents, received on May 17, 2021 and changes to project plans, received on December 16, 2022 and January 3, 2022, DEQ certifies that if the permittee complies with the terms and conditions imposed by the permit, and the conditions set forth in this modified water quality certification, then it is reasonable for DEQ to conclude that the project will comply with the applicable requirements of Sections 301, 302, 303, 306, and 307 of the Clean Water Act, the Idaho Water Quality Standards (WQS) (IDAPA 58.01.02), and other appropriate water quality requirements of state law.

Staff contact:

Chantilly Higbee
Compliance Officer

Related documents

Draft certification

Public Comment Form

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