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Chamber pitches permanent Clift Park dock plan to village board

The permanent dock design concept plan was presented to the Skaneateles Village Board at its Nov. 29 meeting.

The permanent dock design concept plan was presented to the Skaneateles Village Board at its Nov. 29 meeting.

— After 18 years of having seasonal boat docks adjacent to the stone pier at Clift Park, the Skaneateles Area Chamber of Commerce is proposing the installation of a new dock that would be permanent, larger, more attractive and, with an L-shaped configuration, more protective of boats from waves than the current dock.

After spending 10 years and $6,000, the chamber formally pitched the idea to the village board of trustees at its Nov. 29 meeting, and asked for official support from the village as well as the board’s willingness to serve as lead agency as the project goes forward.

“We are not asking you for any money,” said chamber member Sarah Wiles, who, along with chamber executive director Sue Dove, presented the idea to the board. “We are a careful, conservative, caring group, not interested in a project over our heads. I guess we’re asking you to trust us.”

The chamber has been in charge of the Clift Park dock since 1995, when it, with the help of the Finger Lakes Chapter of the Antique and Classic Boat Show, obtained permission, bought materials, built and installed the current seasonal dock system. The docks have been used by residents, visitors and the boat show since then, but for years the chamber has believed a more permanent dock was necessary for boater and boat safety and security, as well as community aesthetics.

The conceptual design for the new dock is to have it run where the seasonal dock currently extends: parallel, but not connected to, the stone pier. But where the seasonal dock ends about three-quarters of the way down the pier, the new dock would run all the way to the end of the pier – a total of about 500 feet.

At the end of the pier, the dock would then turn west to extend until it ends opposite the public swimming area. This perpendicular extension is intended to act as a seawall – built with 18-to-20-inch-high wave attenuators – to protect docked boats from large wave activity.

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