Chicago District Regulatory Public Notices

Public Notices by Year

Mailing List

To receive Regulatory Public Notice emails, please specify for Illinois or Indiana, and Contact:

You can also unsubscribe at any time by replying to a notice or contacting the above email.

Commenting on Public Notices

To comment on a public notice, please make sure that you send it directly to the project manager whose contact information is listed within the notice (either via paper mail or electronic mail).  You must also include your full name and address, as well as the project number.  Please include your email address if you have one.  Thank you.


Published May 17, 2023
Expiration date: 6/19/2023






U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

Chicago District


Public Notice/Application Number: LRC-2009-00554


Comment Period BEGINS:  May 19, 2023

Comment Period Expires:  June 19, 2023


U.S. Army Corps of Engineers



Scott Kingan

Town of Ogden Dunes

115 Hillcrest Road

Ogden Dunes, Indiana 46368


Proposed Action

Proposal for the construction of a revetment along Lake Michigan to provide erosion protection for the dunes and shoreline properties from 64 to 156 Shore Drive in Ogden Dunes (See attached drawings).  A detailed description of this proposal is provided on page 2 of this notice.


Location of Proposed Action 

Along Lake Michigan at 64 to 156 Shore Drive in Ogden Dunes, Porter County, Indiana (Latitude: 41.628316, Longitude: -87.190974).


Interested parties are hereby notified that an application has been received for a Department of the Army permit for the activity described herein and as shown on the attached drawings. You are invited to provide your comments by June 19, 2023, on the proposed work, which will become part of the record and will be considered in the decision.  A permit will be issued or denied under Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899 (33 U.S.C. 403) and Section 404 Action of the Clean Water Act of 1972(33 U.S.C. 1344).


Written comments shall be mailed to:

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

Chicago District, Regulatory Branch

Attn: LRC-2009-00554, Mr. Soren Hall

231 South LaSalle Street, Suite 1500

Chicago, Illinois  60604-1437


It should be noted that ALL comments received by this office (via hard copy or electronic) will only be accepted with the full name and address, and email address, if available of the individual commenting, and must be received by the close of the public notice period.  Electronic comments may be sent to the project manager at


Project Description

Proposal for the construction of a revetment along Lake Michigan to provide erosion protection for the dunes and shoreline properties from 64 to 156 Shore Drive in Ogden Dunes, Porter County, Indiana. The proposed revetment is a continuation of a revetment that was previously constructed from 2 to 56 Shore Drive.


The Town of Ogden Dunes is a 1 square-mile community located at the southern tip of Lake Michigan in Porter County, Indiana. Due to the location of the community at the bottom of Lake Michigan, winds from the north travel along a 300-mile long stretch of lake which has the potential to result in large waves impacting the shoreline. The community is surrounded by land managed by the National Park Service as part of the Indiana Dunes National Park.


The historic creation of the Indiana Port at Burns Harbor resulted in a condition where sediment accretes east of the port and thus reduces the transport of sediment to the Ogden Dunes shoreline. Based on a technical analysis performed for the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore Shoreline Restoration and Management Plan / Environmental Impact Statement in 2012, it is estimated that 74,000 cubic yards of sediment are needed at the Portage Lakefront location (west neighbor of Ogden Dunes) in order to maintain the shoreline positioning.


Based on historic records, the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) has provided occasional sand placement along the beach at Portage Lakefront, but the frequency and quantity of sand has been insufficient to re-nourishing the shoreline. As a result, a vertical SSP wall was installed in the 1980s and 1990s, in front of many Ogden Dunes lakefront residential houses, during a period of high Lake Michigan water levels. During the record high lake levels in 2018 to 2020, the existing steel sheet pile (SSP) walls, stone toe protection at the base of these walls, and the shoreline above the SSP walls experienced damage.


In 2020 and 2021, shoreline protection measures were installed along the east end of the Ogden Dunes shoreline, from 2 Shore Drive to 56 Shore Drive. This work involved the construction of an armor stone revetment along the existing SSP wall. Three properties (20, 24, and 32 Shore Drive) were not provided with a stone revetment due to lack of funding. Based on the project analysis and site investigation findings, continuing the shoreline armoring is now being proposed from 64 to 156 Shore Drive.



This application includes shoreline protection construction west of the implemented Phase I, between 64 and 156 Shore Drive. Various alternatives were formulated and evaluated, as summarized below.

  • Option 1: No Action. If no action is taken, the shoreline erosion and degradation of the SSP walls could continue and possibly lead to catastrophic collapse or failure.
  • Option 2: Annual Sand Nourishment. Option 2 requires the placement of sand along the toe of the SSP walls annually in order to create a small beach that could help with wave breaking and reducing the incoming wave energy while also reducing the SSP wave overtopping potential. Given the history of the neighboring Portage Lakefront beach nourishment performance, the placed sand is expected to quickly be displaced by the waves and induced currents. As stated above, 74,000 cubic yards were calculated for the Portage Lakefront to be placed annually. The Town of Ogden Dunes shoreline is approximately 0.9-mile long, more than the Portage Lakefront (0.22-mile), therefore, the placed annual quantity for the Town would likely need to exceed 74,000 cubic yards. The annual high cost for sand nourishment is believed to be cost prohibitive. This alternative also does not address the deteriorated SSP condition.
  • Option 3: SSP Repair. Option 3 involves repairing the existing SSP walls. This alternative is expected to be expensive and would not address the wave overtopping observed during the storms that occurred from 2018 to 2020. The elevation of the SSP wall would either need to be increased (which would also require increasing the depth of the wall below the ground) or new armor stone would be needed at the wall toe.
  • Option 4: New Armor Stone Revetment. Option 4 closely follows the constructed Phase I revetment. New armor stone would be provided along the toe of the SSP wall, which does not require modifications to the existing SSP wall and protects against wave overtopping and structural damage. The existing stone along the shoreline would be reused in the proposed design. The wave overtopping reduction also allows for upper sand slope restoration with native plants. The project area length is 2,970 feet with 0.07 acres of fill below the Ordinary High Water Mark (OHWM). The stabilized upper slope restoration with dune grasses is 0.53-acre. This is the applicant’s preferred alternative based on the implemented Phase I cost.


The following is a summary of the proposed shoreline protection for Option 4 (see enclosed plans):

  • An armor stone revetment with 3-to-5.5-ton stones tying into the Phase I work from 64 to 156 Shore Drive. The revetment would consist of a 10-foot-wide crest (three stone widths) at an elevation of 592.0 feet, a side slope of 1.5H:1V (Horizontal to Vertical), and upper slope restoration with a mils side slope, and with native dune grass plantings.
  • Beach access #18 will be regraded. This area is intended for emergency vehicle access on the beach.
  • It is anticipated that all structures can be constructed working from the shoreline beach. The individually placed materials would not disturb the stone built in Phase I. The stone materials would carefully be added to form a knitted, well interlocked layer.
  • Two failing beach access staircases would be removed. The project intends to improve public access to the beach. Public beach access staircases would be provided at locations/access points #7, #9, #12, #16, #17, and #19 (see the project plans for the locations). It is intended that all beach access will be constructed using robust stone steps, with the exception of #19, which is to be constructed of wood, as this area is more protected from waves.
  • The current steel beach access staircases located at #11 and #14 would be removed during construction and reused upon completion of the armor stone revetment.
  • The existing toe stone would be reused in the proposed armor stone revetment.
  • The calculated quantity of stone fill below the OHWM (581.5 feet) is 345 tons, with an aerial coverage of 0.07 acres. The OHWM marks the jurisdictional boundary for the Corps permit review. Work occurring landward of the OHWM is not subject to approval by the Corps. The majority of the proposed revetment is located above the OHWM.


Avoidance & Minimization

The applicant has stated the following concerning avoidance and minimization of impacts to Waters of the United States: 

The design and implementation of the proposed design was created with the goal of having the least amount of impact to Lake Michigan. The following criteria were considered:

  • Lake Bottom - The primary bottom impact will be the introduction of clean quarry stone placed on top of the exposed clay/sand material for the small portion of the project area below the OHWM (0.07 acres).
  • Water-Suspended Particulates - No increases in suspended particle load or turbidity are expected when the clean stone is individually placed. Most of the project is above the OHWM, with the clean stone placed on the sandy beach.
  • Water Quality - The proposed construction activities will not alter the quality of the Lake Michigan water. Clean stone will be used and be individually placed on the lake bottom and the sandy beach. The stone will be individually inspected at the quarry and at the delivery location (upland on Shore Drive) to make sure it is clean and free of dirt and impurities.



The applicant has stated the following concerning compensatory mitigation for unavoidable impacts to Waters of the United States:  The net fill below the Ordinary High Water Mark (OHWM) is less than 0.1 acres (0.07 acres). We do not propose compensatory mitigation due to the small area of proposed stone fill. However, we would like to emphasize the net project benefits, such as the improved public access to the shoreline and the upper dune slope restoration with sand fill and dune grasses (0.53 acres).

The Corps has not verified the adequacy of this mitigation proposal at this time and will make the final determination on whether the proposed mitigation is appropriate and practicable in accordance with 33 CFR Part 332.

Regulatory Authority
This proposed action will be reviewed according to the provisions of Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899 and Section 404 of the Clean Water Act of 1972.



This application will be reviewed according to the provisions of Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899 and Section 404 of the Clean Water Act of 1972 due to placement of fill in Lake Michigan. Lake Michigan is a Traditional Navigable Water.


Evaluation Factors

The decision whether to issue a permit will be based on an evaluation of probable impact 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, floodplain values, 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.  In addition, if the proposed activity involves the discharge of dredged or fill material into waters of the United States, the evaluation of the impact on the public interest will include application of Section 404(b)(1) guidelines (40 CFR 230) promulgated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.


The Corps of Engineers is also soliciting comments from the public, Federal, state and local agencies, Indian tribes, and other interested parties in order to consider and evaluate the potential impacts of the proposed activity.  Once this office completes a review of the comments received, it will be determined whether to issue, modify, condition, or deny a permit for this proposal.


To prepare this decision, comments are taken into consideration to assess impacts on the public interest factors listed above, as well as endangered species, historic properties, water quality, and general environmental effects.  Comments will be used in the preparation of an Environmental Assessment and/or Environmental Impact Statement pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act.  A determination concerning the need for a public hearing will also be based on the comments received.


Preliminary Evaluation of Selected Factors


Water Quality:

A Department of the Army permit, if otherwise warranted, will not be issued for this project until a Section 401 Water Quality Certification (WQC) from the Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM) is on file in this office or is considered waived.  The applicant is responsible for obtaining the certification from IDEM.  This public notice serves as the public notice for the application for a Clean Water Act (CWA) Section 401 Water Quality Certification.  IDEM will review this proposal for compliance with the applicable provisions of Section 301, 302, 303, 306 and 307 of the CWA, including the state water quality standards currently set forth at 327 IAC 2.  They will consider comments regarding this proposal postmarked by the closing date of this notice. 


Comments to IDEM should be addressed to:

IDEM, Office of Water Quality,

Section 401 WQC Program

100 N. Senate Ave., IGCN 1255

Indianapolis, Indiana 46204-2251


Coastal Zone Management (CZM):

Pursuant to federal consistency requirements, a federal action that has reasonably foreseeable effects on a land or water use of the Indiana Lake Michigan Coastal Program Area (LMCA) must be consistent with the state laws described in Indiana's program.


For additional information, please contact:

Jenny Orsburn – Program Manager
Office: 219-983-9912 -
Indiana Lake Michigan Coastal Program
Indiana Department of Natural Resources
1600 N 25 East
Chesterton, IN 46304


Endangered and Threatened Species:

The Corps of Engineers has determined that the proposed activity would not affect any federally-listed endangered or threatened species or critical habitat for any endangered or threatened species, pursuant to the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.).  Therefore, consultation with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service pursuant to Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act does not appear to be warranted at this time.


Historic Properties/Cultural Resources:

Preliminary review indicates that the proposed activity is not likely to adversely affect any historic property which is listed, or eligible for listing, on the National Register of Historic Places.


Environmental Impact Statement  

A preliminary determination has been made that an environmental impact statement is not required for the proposed work.


Public Hearing

Any person may request in writing, within the comment period specified in this notice, that a public hearing be held to consider this application.  Requests for public hearing shall state with particularity the reasons for holding a public hearing.  A request for a hearing may be denied if substantive reasons for holding a hearing are not provided or if there is otherwise no valid interest to be served.


It should be noted that materials submitted as part of the permit application become part of the public record and are thus available to the general public under the procedures of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).  Individuals may submit a written request to obtain materials under FOIA or make an appointment to view the project file at the Chicago District Corps of Engineers Office of Counsel.


Interested parties wishing to comment on the proposed activity must do so in writing no later than June 19, 2023.  It is presumed that all parties receiving this notice will wish to respond to this public notice; therefore, a lack of response will be interpreted as meaning that there is no objection to the project as described.


This public notice is not a paid advertisement and is for public information only.  Issuance of this notice does not imply Corps of Engineers endorsement of the project as described.


If you have any questions, please contact Mr. Soren Hall of my staff by telephone at (312) 846-5532, or email at should be noted that ALL comments received by this office (via hard copy or electronic) will only be accepted with the full name and address of the individual commenting.  You can also visit our website at for more information on our program.