Welcome to the 11th edition of the waterfront newsletter. As you recall from our last newsletter in April, the Cochecho Waterfront Development Advisory Committee (CWDAC) has been focusing on the design of the public waterfront park design and layout.
After our March 15 meeting, Union Studio came up with a preferred preliminary concept plan that was highlighted in our last newsletter. Using this concept plan as a template, the Union Studio Team came up with three options for the waterfront docking facilities that were presented at our April 18 meeting, as shown in the figure below. One of these was located at the so-called “knuckle” where a proposed floating dock as well as other docking and ramp facilities may be located. Two other locations for the floating dock were suggested further down river while other docking and ramp facilities remained at the knuckle.
Each of these options had pluses and minuses, which the committee discussed. A major issue for the locations further down stream was the potential impact to marine resources such as eel grass and mudflats. Other issues included potential for boating congestion, as well as hazardous materials. Cost issues were also considered. While the committee preferred the middle location of the three (Option B) for the floating dock, it was also more expensive than Option C and was more likely to have permitting issues with the state resource agencies.
The committee asked Union Studios to continue its efforts to get more information about the resources in these areas and to get a better read from the resource agencies about the permitting issues associated with each of the floating dock locations. The other critical issue facing the city is how the resource agencies will consider the inclusion of the existing sheet pile bulkhead on the knuckle that was installed for the river dredging some years ago. Can it stay in place or will it have to be removed? The answer may depend on how the sheet pile was originally permitted.
CWDAC and Union Studio will continue to look at these waterfront park issues and further refine the plans for the floating dock and other docking facilities as well as the full park design.
We look forward to seeing you at our next meeting on May 17 when we will have a discussion with Union Studio team members about the preferred concept plan.