Ackerman Island


LOCATION: Antioch, IL Nippersink Lake. PARTNERS: IDNR and USACE. FUNDING: IL Capital Bond Funds (IDNR), User Fees (FWA). PROJECT DESIGN / CONSTRUCTION: SEC Group, Ltd. and Copenhaver Construction. COMPLETION DATE: October 2007. COST: $1.2M

Ackerman Island is the original three-cell re-useable hydraulic dredge drying site built in the early 1980’s. Throughout its use, it had experienced severe shoreline erosion along its west and northwest shorelines that had impacted the structural integrity of the levee system surrounding the cells. The Fox Waterway Agency secured Smith Engineering to re-engineer this island for modern use.

In Spring/Summer 2007 we completed our Ackerman Island Dewatering Facility Improvements Project. The project consisted on contracting shoreline stabilization along the west and northwest sides with 2,123 cy of clay. 0.6 acres of tree removal, 1,128 tons of rip rap, 933 cy of topsoil, approximately 6 root wads, and 875 sq yd of seeding, upgrading the access road to the island, and reconstructing the weir (de-watering outlet structure).


American Public Works Association Chicago Metro Chapter – Lake Branch Environment Less Than $2 Million 2008 Project Of the Year Award

Fox River / Chain o’ Lakes Success Story


Restore sediment drying site for ongoing dredging activities, using ecological features to enhance the aesthetic appearance for recreational boaters in this heavy traffic area and for habitat enhancement.


Eco-friendly perimeter utilizing bio-engineered techniques. Used native and meadow plantings, maintained the natural tree buffer, and incorporated fish cover through root balls.


Commercial grade reusable site, which co-exists with nature. A rookery of eagles, blue herons and other water birds, as well as high quality fishing habitat.