Blais: Grant for docks to boost tourism

— Village officials noted recently that a state grant of $177,000 to install new public docks on Beach Road will boost tourism while saving taxpayers some money.

The Village of Lake George has received the grant from the state Waterfront Revitalization program to complete the installation of the docks, located along on Beach Road.

The Village’s six docks, popular with visitors, were heavily damaged during Hurricane Irene and had to be repaired for use during the 2012 summer season. Three of the 90-foot docks were replaced last season with the expenditure of Village funds.

The old docks, constructed of wood, required considerable maintenance and repairs due to their vulnerable location at the southern end of the lake, village Mayor Robert Blais said. Each winter at least one would be damaged by the movement of ice and had to be repaired by Village employees, Blais said.

The new docks are constructed of heavy aluminum posts, driven into the lake bottom with composite decking and padded bumpers. Each dock is equipped with fire extinguisher stations donated by the Lake George Power Squadron. The structures also feature ornamental lighting.

The docks are utilized annually by the popular Antique and Classic Boat Show, Performance Regatta Weekend and Lake George Area Boat Dealers as well as the general public.

Hourly fees are charged to dock boats and annually account for approximately $20,000 in revenue to the village.

Blais said the state grant was much appreciated, considering the condition of the economy.

“These funds will allow us to have first-class facilities available for our boating public,” he said. The grant was the sixth straight given the Village for waterfront revitalization, the popular Lakefront Walkway, Canada Street improvements, the village Visitor Center and the public docks.

“We are extremely grateful to the Department of State, Division of Coastal Resources, and the Governor Council on Economic Development for their overwhelming support of our community,” Blais said, noting the grants have totaled over $2.7 million.

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