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Massive project to protect Oswego's Harbor

These concrete forms, called Dolos, are being made near Rochester to rebuild the Port of Oswego and protect from erosion

The Oswego Harbor is getting a makeover, to repair erosion damage from Hurricane Sandy and stop future wave damage.

There is nothing small about the project: its $18-million price tag is being spent on bringing in granite boulders, many of them in the 32-thousand pound range, to shore up break walls and shorelines. There ae trains, every two and a half days, bringing in cargoes of rocks from near Syracuse and from Vermont. The granite is leftover from countertop production and each is numbered to be placed in an exact place. Once unloaded from trains, the granite is moved by flatbed to behind the Port warehouses, where giant forklifts stack them until needed.

Smaller rocks, some as small as 3 pounds, are being used to 'fill in the holes' in the underwater rock re-enforcements, and they'll be coated with DOLOS, being fabricated in Lima, just south of Rochester.

The 32-thousand pound pre-cast concrete structures will help disperse the energy of oncoming waves. Lakelands Concrete Products is manufacturing them to Army Corps of Engineers specifications, and says it's the largest project of this structure size in North America. The 1,000 Dolos (it means knucklebone) are being staged just beyond Oswego's Maritime Museum, trucked in on flatbeds. Workers attach lifting chains and they're moved into position by an oversized dark green piece of equipment.

Port of Oswego Authority Executive Director Zelko Kirincich says the harbor rebuilding will mean less dredging (and less expense) for his operations, and better protection for the port.

The port stabilization is also good news for anglers: the underwater system being created under Army Corps of Engineers supervision is also expected to be fish-friendly.

The project is on schedule and should be finished by November, when heavy waves start rolling in.

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