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Newtok Planning Group

Waterfront Development

Mertarvik Waterfront Development Plan Documents

Waterfront development at Mertarvik is recognized as a key element in the overall move from Newtok to Mertarvik. The need for protected moorage at the new village site provided the basis for the Mertarvik Waterfront Development Plan (2011-2012).

In June 2011, coastal engineers with the Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities initiated a study of the waterfront area at Mertarvik. In the summer of 2012, a hydrographic survey was conducted along roughly two miles of shoreline and extending 1000 feet offshore in order to characterize the bathymetry offshore and better assess the local waves and currents. The survey will be used to align and configure the mooring basin and breakwaters and also to aid in navigation. Drilling and materials testing was also conducted during this time period.

Six alternative conceptual harbor designs were developed and presented for consideration by the community. The alternatives provide a range of sizes and configurations to accommodate the local needs. A rendering of the preferred alternative is provided in the drawing below.

Mertarvik Boat Harbor
Rendering of Mertarvik Small Boat Harbor (Angyaarvik) by Harvey Smith, P.E., Statewide Coastal and Harbor Engineer

Once the Newtok community is relocated, additional infrastructure may be desirable along the Mertarvik Waterfront. This may include a commercial dock for exporting material from the local quarry. It would be undesirable to have rock or gravel hauled through the community, so a road would be needed to access a commercial dock and barge landing directly from the quarry site.

The next steps for the development of a small boat harbor at Mertarvik include:

  1. Secure funding
  2. Development of detailed plans and specifications
    • If a sheet pile dock is proposed, the recommendation is to supplement the geotechnical investigation with a geophysical survey to identify the presence of bedrock or large boulders
  3. Permits and Environmental Studies
  4. Construction

Contact for More Information

Sally Russell Cox
Division of Community and Regional Affairs
Department of Commerce, Community, and Economic Development
550 West 7th Avenue, Suite 1650
Anchorage, AK 99501
Phone: (907) 269-4588
FAX: (907) 269-4563