Multibeam Survey Keeps East River Safe and Navigable

Using multibeam survey technology, McKim & Creed performed an existing conditions survey of the East River. The 17-mile navigational channel was crowded by water taxis, Staten Island ferries, tourist boats, ships, barges, and tugboats. McKim & Creed Senior Hydrographic Technician Jared Lambert said it was the busiest waterway he’s ever sailed. But seeing the sights of Manhattan from the water, sailing around infamous North Brother Island—where 1,000 lives were lost at sea—and maneuvering through the 5- to 6-knot rushing waters of Hell’s Gate made this survey truly unique.

The multibeam survey covered the entire East River from the Hudson River to Throgs Neck Bridge in Long Island Sound. One hundred percent coverage was achieved, with 10% overlap and a maximum 60-degree swath. The multibeam survey area also included the existing channel between South Brothers and the Berrian Island. This area does not have federal channel limits.

McKim & Creed surveyed all charted obstructions on the most current nautical chart with a 200% overlap. The multibeam data was edited and binned to a 3-ft cell for delivery. Soundings were referenced to MLLW using VDATUM model and NY State Plane Coordinate system for the area. The Corps will use this data to help keep the East River safe and navigable.

Project Details

Client U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, New York District
Location New York, New York