For Immediate Release - June 30, 2010

Patrick-Murray Administration Announces Completion of 17 Fishing and Boating Access Projects

BOSTON - June 30, 2010 - Just in time for the Independence Day holiday weekend - the busiest boating season of the year - Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Ian Bowles today announced the completion of 17 boating and fishing access projects that include boat ramp renovations, parking lot expansions and the construction of fishing platforms.
 

The 17 projects involve repair and new construction of boat ramps, car-top access areas, parking lots and barrier-free shore fishing platforms overseen by the Department of Fish and Game's Office of Fishing and Boating Access.
 

"These improvements mean that anglers and boaters across the state have better access to the thousands of miles of waterways that make Massachusetts such a great outdoor sports destination," said Secretary Bowles.

The Department of Fish and Game's Office of Fishing and Boating Access is charged with providing access to more than 1,200 miles of seashore and hundreds of great ponds, rivers and streams in the Commonwealth. The agency oversees 273 boat and canoe launch sites, shore fishing areas and fishing piers in Massachusetts, giving residents and visitors extensive opportunities to enjoy fishing, canoeing, kayaking, sailing, waterskiing and recreational boating.

"There are more than one million recreational boaters and anglers, including residents and visitors to Massachusetts, who enjoy recreational fishing, boating, canoeing and kayaking each year," said Department of Fish and Game Commissioner Mary Griffin. "I would like to thank our partners - the cities towns and other agencies - who work with us to ensure that our funds go further in providing better access to the state's coastal and inland waters."

The improvement projects were valued at $1 million during fiscal year 2010 and leveraged municipal resources, including staff, to complete project construction. The following projects were completed in fiscal year 2010:

Southeastern Massachusetts

Fall River: Taunton River Basin: The reconstruction of an existing boat ramp with a new float boarding system at a cost of $315,000. The facility provides boating access to Mount Hope Bay, parking for 47 vehicles with trailers, and is managed by the city of Fall River.

Halifax: Monponsett Pond: The reconstruction of the boat ramp and parking area, providing greatly improved access to the 700-acre pond at a cost of $200,000. The site provides parking for 20 vehicles with trailers and is managed by the town of Halifax.

Mattapoisett: Mattapoisett Harbor (Short Wharf): Repairs to the paving at the ramp area cost $10,000. The facility provides parking for 22 vehicles with trailers and access to Buzzards Bay. It is managed by the town of Mattapoisett.

Plymouth: Little South Pond: The construction of a new car-top boat access facility on the small pond with parking for two vehicles. The project cost was $6,000 and the facility will be managed by the town of Plymouth.

Somerset: Broad Cove: This is a new site on the Taunton River, with a car-top boat access and shore fishing area. There are 12 parking spaces for shore anglers or vehicles with car-top boats. It was built at a cost of $10,000 and will be managed by the town of Somerset.

Wareham: Wareham River (Tempest Knob): The agency replaced the float boarding structure at a cost of $17,000. The facility provides parking for 36 vehicles with trailers and is managed by the town of Wareham.

Cape Cod

Harwich: Saquatucket Harbor: The reconstruction of the boat ramp and retaining walls at a cost of $236,000. The agency repaved the parking lot and improved the drainage system at the site in 2006. The site provides parking for 63 vehicles with trailers and is managed by the town of Harwich.

Barnstable: Barnstable Harbor (Blish Point): This replacement of the float boarding system at the boat ramp cost $86,000. The facility provides access to Barnstable Harbor and Cape Cod Bay, parking for 34 vehicles with trailers, and is managed by the town of Barnstable.

Chilmark: Great Rock Bight. This $3,000 maintenance project consists of road improvements to an existing shore fishing area on Vineyard Sound. The facility is managed by the Martha's Vineyard Land Bank.

Northeastern Massachusetts

Hamilton: Chebacco Lake. Improvements to drainage and parking at the boat access facility at a cost of $4,000. The facility provides parking for 17 vehicles with trailers and is managed by the Department of Conservation and Recreation.

Danvers: Porter River (Pope's Landing). The replacement of a gangway at the boat ramp's float loading system at a cost of $10,000. The facility provides parking for 64 vehicles with trailers and is managed by the town of Danvers.

Reading: Ipswich River. The construction of a new car-top access facility and shore fishing area on the stocked trout water. It provides six parking spaces for shore anglers or vehicles with car-top boats. The project cost was $7,000 and the site is managed by the town of Reading.

Salem: Danvers River (Kernwood Marina). This reconstruction of a coastal boat ramp and the addition of a new float loading system at a cost of $480,000. The facility provides parking for 42 vehicles with trailers and is managed by the city of Salem.

Central and Western Massachusetts

Sturbridge: Alum Pond. The reconstruction of the boat ramp and bituminous concrete roadway apron at a cost of $25,000. The pond is stocked with trout by the Division of Fisheries and Wildlife; the site provides parking for 10 vehicles with trailers and is managed by the town of Sturbridge.

Cheshire: Cheshire Reservoir. This project involved the construction of four new barrier-free shore fishing platforms connected by paved pathways. The large reservoir, also known as Hoosac Lake, is a popular warm water fishery. The project cost was $55,000 and the site is managed by the town of Cheshire.

Southwick: Great Brook. This $32,000 project involved the construction of a new shore fishing facility, partially constructed with volunteer labor. The site provides parking for six vehicles and access to a stream stocked with trout by the Division of Fisheries and Wildlife.

Southwick: Congamond Lakes. The agency did miscellaneous repairs and improvements to the boat ramp on the northern ramp at a cost of $5,000. The site provides parking for 30 vehicles with trailers, 10 vehicle only spaces, and is managed by the town of Southwick.

DFG's Office of Fishing and Boating Access manages the construction, repair, and operation of state boat ramps, canoe and car-top launch sites, parking areas and approach roads. The office oversees facility design and construction, which is usually done by private contractors or municipal public works departments. Office funds are also used to construct handicapped accessible sport fishing piers and to purchase and improve shoreline fishing areas.