City close to making catwalk repair decision

Alex Doty • Jan 11, 2017 at 10:00 AM

Grand Haven leaders sat down with U.S. Army Corps of Engineers experts earlier this week to discuss the latest regarding the city’s catwalk repair project.

City Manager Pat McGinnis said the meeting included members of City Council; two federal engineers; representatives from the city’s engineering firm, Wade Trim; and two people from the city’s Department of Public Works.

“City Council spent a couple of hours at the Corps of Engineers’ building,” McGinnis said. “We reviewed proposals by five different contractors who gave us proposals on doing the catwalk renovation work.”

McGinnis called the meeting “very productive.” He expects to be bringing something before City Council at its meeting on Monday, Jan. 16.

This past fall, the city removed the catwalk from the south pier in advance of the Corps of Engineers’ year-long pier repair project. The catwalk was taken apart in sections and moved by barge to a storage area at the Verplank docks in Ferrysburg.

The removal and storage portion of the project cost $80,000, McGinnis said.

“It’s in the $800,000 ball park for the renovation, plus another $100,000 to put the structure back on the pier,” McGinnis said. “We’ve raised $250,000 toward a $1 million goal.”

A fundraising committee has worked over the past year-plus to raise money and awareness for the catwalk repair project. The committee has hosted a variety of fundraisers and community events.

“We’re optimistic,” McGinnis said of fundraising efforts. “The community has been very supportive and generous.”

McGinnis noted that these fundraising efforts include several events taking place at and during the upcoming Winterfest, Jan. 26-29. Events taking place on Saturday, Jan. 28, include a wine and beer tasting at the Eagles, a cold water dumpster dive with money going toward the catwalk, and a Rotary Club of Grand Haven run to benefit the catwalk.

“We’re going to get it done,” McGinnis said. “It’s just a matter of when.”

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