Construction to Begin on Artificial Reef Off Harwich

KA_Earl Road Beach_Harwich_ Rainy_123015_Winter097HARWICH – Construction of an artificial reef in Saquatucket Harbor off the coast of Harwich is expected to begin in the next few weeks.

The reef, which is being funded by the state’s Division of Marine Fisheries, will be constructed from materials saved from the demolition of the old Harwich High School.

A work bid of $122,500 from Robert B. Our Company, Inc., a Harwich site and utility construction firm, came in significantly lower than other bids for the project.

Amy Usowski, the conservation administrator for the town of Harwich, said the reef is being built to attract more species of fish to the area.

“Nantucket Sound in general is a fairly barren bottom,” she said. “What brings fish in and attracts them is structure to the bottom.”

Usowski said Yarmouth has installed a large artificial reef and has an enormous amount of productivity in attracting more groundfish species to the area.

“We’ve spent over four years in the planning, permitting and now implementation of this project,” Usowski said. “It’s definitely been a long time coming and we’re just really happy to see it implemented.”

The Division of Marine Fisheries is using money from the state’s Saltwater Recreation Angler’s License funds to pay for the project.

Once installed, the artificial reef will be restricted to recreational fishing only.

By BRIAN MERCHANT, CapeCod.com NewsCenter

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