Demolition begins on Monongahela River dam

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers used explosives to breach the dam at the Monongahela River Lock and Dam 3 on Wednesday.

Officials say the project will create a continuous pool of riverway, stretching 30 miles from Charleroi to Braddock, and is expected to generate an economic benefit of $200 million annually.

“It is a big deal,” said Col. Nicholas Melin, Army Corps Pittsburgh district commander. “Not just for the region but the Pittsburgh District Corps of Engineers has over 800 employees and many of them have been working on this project for three decades.”

The controlled demolition is of the first 50-foot section of the dam, with others to follow.

The work to remove the rest of the dam will continue through December. Other phases of work should last until 2027.

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