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Yacht club eyes expansion

Marie Havenga • Jul 21, 2015 at 1:40 PM

According to permit request information from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the proposed expansion would more than double the broadside dockage from 440 lineal feet to 950, and expand its capacity from 16 to 26 boats.

Overall, the project is intended to provide protection from waves, provide handicap accessibility, add depth for boat launching and provide a vegetation-free shore for swimming, according to the documents.

The yacht club's plans include removing five existing piers — structures ranging from 40 feet to 100 feet. An existing 74-foot pier would be extended to 134 feet and include a wave baffle. The expansion would include a 186-foot floating pier with a wheelchair-accessible gangway, as well as a wave barrier. An existing 132-foot pier would be extended another 15 feet.

The plans also include installing three boat lifts and expanding three existing steel launch ramps.

The Corps of Engineers is currently seeking public comment on the proposal.

Comments can be e-mailed to Katie.L.Schill@usace.army.mil. Include your name and mailing address.

Although the federal agency is asking for public comment, yacht club Commodore Beth Windemuller said she did not want to publicize the proposal until after the club's board meeting in February.

“We are still in the really early stages of this,” she said. “I would like it if we could do a formal announcement after our board meeting in February. We're still in the early stages and don't know if it will be processed or go through.”

Windemuller did not return phone calls last week seeking further comment.

Although the Corps of Engineers will be the main decision-maker on whether the proposal will fly, the yacht club will also need a nod of approval from the Ferrysburg Planning Commission for dredging.

To read more of this story, see Saturday’s print or e-edition of the Grand Haven Tribune.

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