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SAW-2016-02211

Posted: 2/7/2019

Expiration date: 3/11/2019


PUBLIC NOTICE
Issue Date: February 7, 2019
Comment Deadline: March 11, 2019

Corps Action ID Number: SAW-2016-02211


The Wilmington District, Corps of Engineers (Corps) received an application from the North Carolina
Department of Transportation, Rail Division, seeking Department of the Army authorization to
permanently fill 427 linear feet of perennial stream channel and 0.17 acres of surface water
(Streams A and C), and to excavate less than 0.01 acres of wetland, for the construction of 2,500
linear feet of new connector track, at the Charlotte Wye, between the Norfolk Southern Railroad
(NS), Atlanta to Washington D.C. mainline and the NS R-line. The project also includes associated
rail improvements and intersection improvements, on/near Seymour Drive, in Charlotte, Mecklenburg
County, North Carolina.

Specific plans and location information are described below and shown on the attached plan sheets
1-8 dated October 12, 2018. This Public Notice and all attached plans are also available on the
Wilmington District Web Site at: 
http://www.saw.usace.army.mil/Missions/RegulatoryPermitProgram.aspx

Applicant:                           

Mr. James Bridges, P.E.
North Carolina Department of Transportation, Rail Division
1553 Mail Service Center North Carolina, 27699-1553

Authority

The Corps evaluates this application and decides whether to issue, conditionally issue, or deny the
proposed work pursuant to applicable procedures of the following Statutory Authorities:

Section 404 of the Clean Water Act (33 U.S.C. 1344)

Location


Location Description:  The project area is a triangular tract of land located in the western side
of Charlotte, North Carolina along two railroad tracks, intersecting Seymour Drive, Primrose
Avenue, and Morris Field Drive.

Project Area (acres):  51.74 acres                 

Nearest Town:  Charlotte

Nearest Waterway: Taggart Creek               

River Basin:  Catawba

Latitude and Longitude:  35.221267 N, -80.909280 W

Existing Site Conditions

Land use in the vicinity to the project area consists of commercial and industrial properties to
the north and east. Residential areas are located to the south and west. The Carolina Golf Club is
nearby to the east of the project area.

Applicant’s Stated Purpose

The primary purpose of the project is to improve the efficiency of rail operations in the Charlotte
region and reduce the impacts to freight trains and vehicular traffic from the turning around the
Carolinian passenger train, upon its arrival at the Charlotte Amtrak Station.

Project Description

Permanently fill 427 linear feet of perennial stream channel and 0.17 acres of surface water
(Streams A and C), and to excavate less than 0.01 acres of wetland, for the construction of 2,500
linear feet of new connector track, at the Charlotte Wye, between the Norfolk Southern Railroad
(NS), Atlanta to Washington D.C. mainline and the NS R-line.

Avoidance and Minimization

The applicant provided the following information in support of efforts to avoid and/or minimize
impacts to the aquatic environment: Existing drainage patterns were maintained and 2:1 slopes were
used where possible to minimize impacts to streams and wetlands. Project plans were designed to
minimize impacts to wetland A, and Streams A and C.

Compensatory Mitigation

The applicant offered the following compensatory mitigation plan to offset unavoidable functional
loss to the aquatic environment:  Purchasing of sufficient compensatory stream credits from the
North Carolina Division of Mitigation Services.

Cultural Resources

Pursuant to Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, Appendix C of 33 CFR
Part 325, and the 2005 Revised Interim Guidance for Implementing Appendix C, the District Engineer
consulted district files and records and the latest published version of the National Register of
Historic Places and initially determines that:

Should historic properties, or properties eligible for inclusion in the National Register, be
present within the Corps’ permit area; the proposed activity requiring the DA permit (the
undertaking) is a type of activity that will have no potential to cause an effect to an historic
properties.

The District Engineer’s final eligibility and effect determination will be based upon coordination
with the SHPO and/or THPO, as appropriate and required, and with full consideration given to the
proposed undertaking’s potential direct and indirect effects on historic properties within the
Corps-indentified permit area.

Endangered Species

Pursuant to the Endangered Species Act of 1973, the Corps reviewed the project area, examined all
information provided by the applicant and consulted the latest North Carolina Natural Heritage
Database. Based on available information:

The Corps determines that the proposed project would not affect federally listed endangered or
threatened species or their formally designated critical habitat.

Other Required Authorizations

The Corps forwards this notice and all applicable application materials to the appropriate State
agencies for review.

North Carolina Division of Water Resources (NCDWR): The Corps will generally not make a final
permit decision until the NCDWR issues, denies, or waives the state Certification as required by
Section 401 of the Clean Water Act (PL 92-500). The receipt of the application and this public
notice, combined with the appropriate application fee, at the NCDWR Central Office in Raleigh
constitutes initial receipt of an application for a 401 Certification. A waiver will be deemed to
occur if the NCDWR fails to act on this request for certification within sixty days of receipt of a
complete application. Additional information regarding the 401 Certification may be reviewed at the
NCDWR Central Office, 401 and Buffer Permitting Unit, 512 North Salisbury Street, Raleigh, North
Carolina 27604-2260. All persons desiring to make comments regarding the application for a 401
Certification should do so, in writing, by February 28, 2019 to:

NCDWR Central Office
Attention:  Ms. Amy Chapman, 401 and Buffer Permitting Unit
(USPS mailing address): 1617 Mail Service Center, Raleigh, NC 27699-1617

Or, (physical address): 512 North Salisbury Street, Raleigh, North Carolina 27604

North Carolina Division of Coastal Management (NCDCM):

Based upon all available information, the Corps determines that this application for a Department
of Army (DA) permit does not involve an activity which would affect the coastal zone, which is
defined by the Coastal Zone Management (CZM) Act (16 U.S.C. § 1453).

Evaluation

The decision whether to issue a permit will be based on an evaluation of the probable impacts
including cumulative impacts of the proposed activity on the public interest. That decision will
reflect the national concern for both protection and utilization of important resources. The
benefit which reasonably may be expected to accrue from the proposal must be balanced against its
reasonably foreseeable detriments. All factors which may be relevant to the proposal will be
considered including the cumulative effects thereof; among those are conservation, economics,
aesthetics, general environmental concerns, wetlands, historic properties, fish and wildlife 
values, flood hazards, flood plain values (in accordance with Executive Order 11988), land use,
navigation, shoreline erosion and accretion, recreation, water supply and conservation, water
quality, energy needs, safety, food and fiber production, mineral needs, considerations of property
ownership, and, in general, the needs and welfare of the people. For activities involving the
discharge of dredged or fill materials in waters of the United States, the evaluation of the impact
of the activity on the public interest will include application of the Environmental Protection
Agency’s 404(b)(1) guidelines.

Commenting Information

The Corps of Engineers is soliciting comments from the public; Federal, State and local agencies
and officials, including any consolidated State Viewpoint or written position of the Governor;
Indian Tribes and other interested parties in order to consider and evaluate the impacts of this
proposed activity. Any comments received will be considered by the Corps of Engineers to determine
whether to issue, modify, condition or deny a permit for this proposal. To make this decision,
comments are used to assess impacts on endangered species, historic properties, water quality,
general environmental effects and the other public interest factors listed above.
Comments are used in the preparation of an Environmental Assessment (EA) and/or an Environmental
Impact Statement (EIS) pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). Comments are also
used to determine the need for a public hearing and to determine the overall public interest of the
proposed activity.

                                                  
Any person may request, in writing, within the comment period specified in this notice, that a
public hearing be held to consider the application. Requests for public hearings shall state, with
particularity, the reasons for holding a public hearing. Requests for a public hearing will be
granted, unless the District Engineer determines that the issues raised are insubstantial or there
is otherwise no valid interest to be served by a hearing.

The Corps of Engineers, Wilmington District will receive written comments pertinent to the proposed
work, as outlined above, until 5pm, March 11, 2019. Comments should be submitted to: Ms. Nicholle
Braspennickx, c/o Asheville Regulatory Field Office, 151 Patton Avenue, Room 208, Asheville, North
Carolina, 28801-5006. phone: 704-510-0162, or email at:
Nicholle.M.Braspennickx@usace.army.mil.