An indispensable structure at Ensley Engineer Yard known as the stringout is getting a much needed “facelift” over the course of the next few years, and is slated for completion in the spring of 2022.
The stringout, which at first glance many might call a pier, is primarily responsible for mooring the Memphis District Survey and Motor Vessels, Dredges, and Floating Plant during the maintenance season, according to Physical Support Branch Deputy Chief Matt Young.
Project Manager Tim Marshall believes this replacement will ensure Ensley Engineer Yard is postured to perform critical repairs to the Memphis District fleet as well as fleets from sister USACE districts and other Federal Agencies.
The project to get the longstanding stringout redone has been in the works for quite some time, and for good reason, as a project of this size takes a lot of logistical planning from all parties involved.
“The entire system to include the wharf and the locations of the drydocks will be designed and laid out to facilitate shipyard workflow,” Marine Design Center project manager Tom Grisillo said in outlining the major changes to be expected. “The structural components will be more robust with steel piles replacing timber and will require less manpower to adjust lines as the river level fluctuates.”
Ensuring the stringout is operable throughout all phases of construction is a priority, as it is one of the main reasons why EEY is such a unique asset to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
“It [EEY] is well situated along the Inland System and can be used strategically to provide repair services to the USACE fleet,” commented Grisillo. “EEY has a good working relationship with the MDC and projects can flow easily from design and engineering at MDC to shipyard production at EEY. This project will benefit more than just the Memphis District; it serves to benefit the entire Mississippi Valley as well.”