photo credits: Adam Somers, Island Times

Along the outer perimeter of Angaur’s dock stands a newly-constructed concrete apron seawall, part of an ongoing construction project to improve the safety of the island’s harbor.

The project involves extending the height of the existing seawall by eight feet to protect Angaur’s main harbor from ocean currents, which are notoriously strong. In the past, waves during typhoons have spilled over the wall, in some cases flooding the streets around the harbor and causing damage to residences and buildings along the coast.

The force of the waves around the island has also been known to prevent incoming boats from docking in the harbor.

Workers from Surangel & Sons Construction Company, which is commissioned to complete the project, have said that the height of the new wall, in addition to the natural bedrock, is designed to repel strong waves before they reach the harbor.

Right now, the dock is estimated to be finished by sometime in February, although the unpredictability of the weather has caused delays throughout the project, with heavy rains and ocean currents sometimes inflicting damage to the building materials. While the main structure of the new seawall is complete, stretching along the entire perimeter of the original one, Surangel & Sons Construction plans to extend it further west for added protection.

In addition to the construction of the seawall, the project includes improvements to the boat-ramp and the riprap, which are ongoing, as well as installation of Tetrapods on the ocean floor along the westernmost part of the dock, concrete pyramidal structures which, when linked together, slow the impact of incoming waves.

The Angaur Dock Improvement Project is funded by over $2 million from the United States Government, allocations from Compact funding which were designated for the project in 2019, along with another $6 million for improvements to the roads in Koror and Airai.

Angaur has seen a slew of infrastructural improvement projects within the past year, with repairs to the dock adding to the rehabilitation and reopening of an island health center, improvements to the airfield, and the overhaul of the State ferry, Regina IV. 

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