North Harbour, a city owned marina in Powell River, British Columbia, Canada recently completed a rebuild and reconfiguration project that effectively increased the marina’s moorage space by 19% from 7,943 feet of chargeable moorage space to 9,500 feet.
The goal of the rebuild was to address failing infrastructure and a growing waiting list for larger berths. According to the City of Powell River, there had been an increasing demand for larger berths in the area, and there was a large waiting list of boat owners with vessel 28 feet and larger wishing to moor at North Harbour.
Building or renovating a marina can be, and usually is, a long and complicated process. One of the major obstacles these days is the permitting procedure. In order to obtain the necessary permits to move forward a good deal of time and money is required to complete concept designs, impact studies and environmental assessments.
Permit approval brings a developer only to the starting line of a project and the next stage will usually involve a complicated mix of marina consultants, architects, engineers, contractors, sub-contractors and a whole host of “experts”. Apart from the obvious cost of all these experts, a huge amount of the developer’s time is required to define their input, coordinate their work and assess their recommendations. The result of this process is a specification or tender document, which is then sent out to various marina construction companies who spend more time and money reworking the designs to suit their particular dock systems. This can involve cutting corners and interpreting specifications to allow the very minimum possible so as to ensure a competitive bid.
This is not an ideal situation for a developer who wants a quality marina. There is no doubt that this tried and tested system works; however, it comes at a cost of both time and money.
If you have an aging marina, and a complete replacement is not feasible there are a number of things you can do to update and beautify your property without taking on a comprehensive rebuild.
Lido Yacht Anchorage, located in Newport Beach, Calif. had originally planned to replace the marina’s aging timber docks with a modern concrete floating dock system and upgrade their utilities. However, a comprehensive renovation would require dredge work and replacement of the marina’s seawall as well as an upgrade in the marina’s shore power. After further evaluation, this option was determined not practical for the marina at the time.
So, rather than take on a comprehensive renovation project, the owners decided to focus on repairing and beautifying the marina they had. This decision not only increased the service life of the marina’s docks but gave the tenants and property owners a facility they were proud to show off.
We are entering an era where green and environmentally friendly products and practices are more in demand than ever before. Nowhere is this truer than in the marina industry. Marinas operate in some of the world’s most sensitive habitats and are often found in the environmental spotlight. Around the world, federal, state and local agencies among others are pushing marinas and ports to become more environmentally conscious.
Developers, marina owners and port districts are stepping up to the plate and are looking for solutions to be better stewards of their environment. Specifying “green” or “environmentally friendly” products is becoming a more common practice in the marina industry.The challenge for many on the purchasing as well as manufacturing end is navigating the wilds of green advertising. Continue Reading…
To describe Marina Design as a simple process would be a lie, but it’s not magic. There are quite a few simple things you can do for yourself to ensure that the design of your marina is optimized for your market and your expected return.
One of the most important things you can do is team up early on with an experienced marina design consultant and construction company. They will help you avoid common pitfalls and will help establish a realistic masterplan for the site. Look for companies that have a long history in the market and a proven track record. Your strongest team will be one that is led by a single firm that has a rich network of marina professionals.
Another is, talk to boaters – owners, captains, crew, and anyone else who has visited a number of different marinas. It may sound like a no brainer but you’d be surprised how under utilized boaters are when it comes to marina design. In 2007, Bellingham Marine put together a focus group of yacht captains and crew members to hear what they had to say about marina design. This was the first time anyone in the industry had really sat down and listened to what boat owners appreciate in a marina. The process led to a better understanding of the level and types of amenities they look for. It also provided great insight about the type dock systems they prefer.
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