Damaged harbour breakwall, docks still need repair ahead of long weekend
Repairs to west harbour marina docks damaged in a big storm last month have started, but they won’t be finished for the first big weekend of the boating season.
As well, the city is still assessing what it will take to refloat the Pier 8 breakwall, which was also damaged during the April 14-15 storm, leaving the marina open to violent waves.
“They have had a difficult time assessing the damage because of murky water,” Gavin Norman, manager at the Waterfront Development Office, said this week.
The $3.3-million breakwall calms the waters at the Harbour West Marina.
During the wind storm, waves broke sections of the steel tubes that form the floating structure. At the marina, at least 10 fingers and the main dock were damaged,
“We have initiated repair of the docks in the meantime, but the work will not be done until the breakwater is in place.”
Boats started launching at the marina on April 16, and continue to, “albeit at a slower pace than usual,” Larissa Fenn, Hamilton Port Authority spokesperson, said Thursday. “We have been able to accommodate about half of our approximately 300 customers so far; we are likely two weeks away from having all of our customers on the water.”
The launch typically wraps up on the May long weekend, Fenn said. Some boat slips still need to be repaired or can’t be used because they’re not protected with the breakwall down, she said.
Kehoe Marine Construction made the breakwall in 2016. Its preferred plan is to refloat the structure temporarily with buoyancy bags until it can be repaired, Norman said.
The city shouldn’t be on the hook for marina repairs because the breakwall is under warranty, he said.
A representative of the Royal Hamilton Yacht Club, which has about 300 members, couldn’t be reached for comment Thursday.
The breakwall off Pier 8 was damaged by April’s intense storm.