Shelter Island Boat Launch Ramp almost ready to re-open

Port district announces reconstruction of boating venue should be complete by December.

SAN DIEGO — Boaters in America’s Finest City might look under the Christmas tree this holiday season and find a gift from the Port of San Diego. The Shelter Island Boat Launch Ramp might finally be open to the boating public after an arduous and delayed redevelopment process.

Port district staff stated construction work is now in its final phases and the boat launch ramp improvement project has made significant progress toward completion. The ramp could be open at some point in December. An official announcement of when, exactly, the launch ramp will open will be made as soon as the port district has a date.

Some work on the boat launch ramp improvement project is expected to continue once the venue is open; all work should be completed by January 2019, according to port district staff.

“The project has made progress with the completion of the breakwater wall, which entailed installation of 92 piles and 53 concrete wall panels; completion of both platforms that will connect to the floating docks; completion of the new concrete ramp and connecting apron; and installation of floating docks on the east side of the boat launch basin,” port district staff said in a released statement.

“The contractor is currently installing the west side guide piles for the west floating docks, and building up the new roadway connecting the new boat ramp to the adjacent parking lots,” port district staff continued. “The public will be able to access the ramp once the connecting roadway is finished, and the floating docks and gangways are installed.”

Completing the boat launch ramp improvement project has been a trying process – the venue was shut down for construction work toward the end of the 2017 boating season. Work, which technically started in May 2017, was to be completed within a few months, allowing boaters to access the ramp as the 2018 boating season kicked into full gear. But construction delays caused work on the boat launch ramp to continue several months beyond the scheduled completion date.

An updated Shelter Island Boat Launch Ramp is expected to be safer and easier to navigate, according to port district staff.

“Upgrades include enlarging the maneuvering area in the basin by 80 percent, replacing the worn-out launch ramp, increasing the lengths of the boarding floats, installing public docks, public walkways, adjacent parking, and upgrading the restroom to current Americans with Disabilities Act Standards,” port district staff stated.

Updating the Shelter Island Boat Launch Ramp, which was equipped with 10 lanes and handled 50,000 boats annually, cost $9.5 million. California’s Division of Boating and Waterways, Wildlife Conservation Board and the port district funded the project. The boat launch ramp was in need of modernizing, according to the port district, because of regular wear-and-tear and the corrosive effects of saltwater.

Shelter Island Boat Launch Ramp was built in the 1950s and twice updated (1976 and 2005).

Other boat launch ramps in the San Diego area are found at Chula Vista Harbor, National City’s Pepper Park (Pier 32 Marina), Oceanside Harbor and Mission Bay (five locations).


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