The City of Homer and the USACE signed a Federal Cost Share Agreement (FCSA) to advance a Homer Harbor Expansion Study. The cost share agreement is a contractual arrangement between the City and USACE to help share costs and resources. The 3-year feasibility study, led by the USACE, will help determine whether it is technically feasible and financially viable to expand the harbor.
The study involves developing and analyzing design alternatives, evaluating economic and environmental impacts, and encouraging community input to address benefits, risks, and concerns.
The City is committed to delivering a robust public engagement process to ensure that the input and ideas of the diverse Homer community are considered and reflected in the development of the design alternatives. Visit the Get Involved page for details.
Growing Harbor Demand
A combination of increased demand, larger vessels, and safety concerns has prompted the City to thoroughly examine the current and future needs of Homer’s Port and Harbor for a better tomorrow:
- Demand for moorage far exceeds the harbor’s capacity due to the increased growth of fishing, marine transportation, coastal research, and tourism industries.
- Between 2008 and 2018, the local fishing fleet grew in number by more than 42 percent.
- Vessels are also growing in size; the number of those with lengths exceeding the harbor’s largest stalls doubled during the same time period.
- Large marine vessels are currently being moored three or more abreast in the small boat harbor, which causes overcrowding, increases the potential for collisions, and creates safety hazards for vessel crews needing to access or work on the rafted vessels.
- There are more than 400 names on the stall waitlist for small vessels.
Expanding the harbor will help keep the region’s economy diversified and strong by meeting today’s needs, promoting good job opportunities in the marine trades and support sectors, and positioning Homer Harbor to flexibly meet future needs.
The planning process advances along two coordinated tracks—City of Homer HHE Execution and USACE HHE Execution—as illustrated in the graphic at left. The scoping and opportunity appraisal phases began in May 2023. During these phases, public input and data collection are a key focus. The subsequent alternatives evaluation and analysis phase is expected to last approximately 9 months; public engagement will continue throughout this phase, ensuring that the alternatives are developed and evolve in a manner that considers and reflects community needs. The goal is to complete the evaluation of selected alternative design solutions and arrive at a tentatively selected plan (TSP) by the end of the first year of the study. Selecting a TSP for further in-depth study is the milestone capping the USACE’s first year of planning activities.
More detailed information will be provided as it becomes available.
Draft – Work collaboratively with all segments of the community to explore opportunities to expand necessary infrastructure while ensuring Homer’s maritime future, navigational safety, environmental integrity, and regional connectivity. Align the development of any opportunities with the City of Homer Port and Harbor Department Mission Statement.
Draft – Recognizing Homer’s unique environmental setting and our common love to live, work, and play here, we will enhance Homer’s maritime opportunities in a fiscally, environmentally, and socially responsible manner for the benefit of all.
Planning activities began with the City of Homer in April 2023, starting with drafting a Charter Document at a joint public work session with the Homer City Council and Port and Harbor Advisory Commission. The document outlines a shared vision, goals, objectives, and success factors for the City’s involvement in the Homer Harbor Expansion project. View the Charter Document which was adopted by Resolution at the Homer City Council’s June 12, 2023, meeting.