It took about 11 years, but Cases Creek in Aquebogue has finally been dredged.
“I’ve waited a long time for this,” said Aquebogue resident Jack Hansen.
He keeps his boat docked in the creek, and said he has been unable to get out into the bay at times because of the shoaling at the mouth of the creek.
The Suffolk County Department of Public Works, which dredges East End waterways, was reluctant to dredge Cases Creek for many years because the bulkhead at the adjacent Dreamers Cove motel was in disrepair. Town and county officials had liability concerns should the bulkhead or a small building near it collapse during the dredging.
The Dreamers Cove was purchased by the Kontakosta family of Greenport in 2012, and they eventually secured a permit from the state Department of Environmental Conservation to begin repairing the bulkhead on the west side of the creek.
A property owner on the east side also got permit to repair the bulkhead on that side of creek, and the county moved in to being dredging on Wednesday morning at about 10:30 a.m., according to Mr. Hansen, who said they expected to be done by mid-day Friday.
“This is very good news,” he said. “The whole neighborhood is shaping up.”
At times, the mouth of the creek was completely covered in sand, he said.
Having the bulkheads repaired means the liability concern is removed, and the county will be able to dredge Cases Creek on a more regular basis in the future, Mr. Hansen said.
Getting better flow in the creek also means there will be less standing water, and less mosquitoes, he said.
However, it could be a bittersweet victory for Mr. Hansen.
“My house is for sale, so if it sells, I might not ever get to use the creek,” he said.
In addition, he said the dredging only dealt with the entrance to the creek, and the rest of Cases Creek also needs to be dredged.