L’Anse Marina expansion studied

L’ANSE – The feasibility study for large-scale expansion of the L’Anse Marina should be completed by December.

U.P. Engineers & Architects has been working on the feasibility study for the project that is being funded by a $12,500 Michigan Department of Natural Resources grant and a match from the Downtown Development Authority. A payment for $2,388.11 was approved Monday L’Anse Village Council.

“We hope to have the study grant and everything put together with some design options for a project in December for the village council and DDA to mull over,” L’Anse Village Manager Bob LaFave said. “Based on what we’re looking at, we’ll send it to the (U.S. Army) Corps of Engineers and DNR for comments. Hopefully after that phase, we’ll be able to go for construction dollars.”

About a week ago, LaFave and Trustee Leann Davis met with representatives from the Corps of Engineers and DNR at the marina to talk about potential issues during the design phase, including adjacent wetlands and a 100-year-old sunken vessel, the Northerner, near the marina.

Possible plans at the site include a much larger dock with a boardwalk jutting out into Keweenaw Bay, piers on either side of a dredged area, a harbormaster building and a fuel dock.

“We really think it’d be a great project for the area,” LaFave said.

Construction would likely begin next year, and Greg Kingstrom from UPEA is still working on collecting data, such as information about currents in the area and rates and occupancy levels at other marinas on the south shore of the Keweenaw Peninsula.