No cost estimate yet
erates the marina for the city.
The steel-framed docks are set in place with steel poles that go into the earth bed, Marinello explained. The ice gets under the fixed docks, and as the ice comes up, it lifts the docks out of the poles.
“It’s nothing we can’t handle,” said Marinello, noting that dockholders would not be displaced.
The City of Buffalo in 2014 awarded a five-year contract to Smith Boys to operate the marina. Finn said the contract requires that repairs are the responsibility of the operators; capital improvements are the city’s responsibility.
Finn said city officials don’t believe the expense of this year’s dock repairs will fall to the city.
Neither Finn nor Marinello has an estimate for the cost of the dock repairs yet.
If the work is not completed this month, there will be backup docks for boaters who show up May 1 and discover their slips are not ready, Finn said.
Only one of the docks at the marina was designed to be removed during the winter, Finn said. Marinello said city officials have in the past discussed replacing the rest of the docks with removable docks. But they determined that could be more expensive in the long run.
“The docks have lasted, some since 1974. They’re very solid docks. We have very harsh winters.”
The Buffalo Fire Department’s Edward M. Cotter fireboat was at the basin Tuesday breaking up the ice so that Marinello could get equipment and boats in the marina to begin repairs.
Meanwhile, the docks at Safe Harbor Marina at Buffalo Harbor State Park fared better this winter, largely due to new year-round docks that were installed in April 2017 as part of Safe Harbor Development’s $8 million capital improvement investment into Buffalo Harbor State Park.
“There has not been major damage, just all kinds of normal maintenance to get the season started,” said Nanette Pease, a dock worker.
“The new docks were designed to withstand the area’s harsh conditions,” said Dan Keefe, a spokesman for the state Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation. “We were pleased with their performance during those extreme weather events.”