GARDEN CITY – Utah State Parks recently announced where to build the new marina at Bear Lake. The important thing for some was not so much where it is being built, but when it is being built.
The Utah Division of Facilities Construction and Management and the Utah Department of Natural Resources announced their selection for the new marina. It is called the West North Beach Marina.
The project team weighed the challenges, opportunities, and impacts associated with each of the sites and they thought this one was the best place to put the new marina.
Some of the reasons the West Beach North site was chosen was due to the availability of utility connections and access points, established operations and maintenance facilities, proximity to local lodging, cost, and low comparative environmental impact.
“The new marina will be built adjacent to the existing marina,” said Claudia Cottle a board member of Bear Lake Watch a conservation group that watches out for Bear Lake. “The legislature authorized $60 million to build it.”
After comprehensive evaluation of potential site locations, it was determined that the West Beach North site would maximize benefits to Bear Lake recreators and minimize environmental impacts.
“They presented us with different options and they decided on this one,” she said. “We think it’s a better idea because it will take in more of the natural flow or movement of the lake.”
Terri Wahlberg a Bear Lake State Park Marina employee, said she was not worried about where they put the new marina just that they put one in. The current marina has people backed up to launch their boats for a long time and a new one will relive some of that pressure.
“The new marina will have fewer slips than the existing one, but they will be different sizes,” she said. “The launch ramp will also be bigger.”
Tami Leonhardt, from Bear Lake Valley Convention and Visitors Bureau, said putting in a new marina was a good idea.
“I think it is a good decision to put the new marina in because it takes a long time for people to get their boats in and out of the water,” she said. “A new marina will not necessarily bring more people to the lake but will accommodate those that are already here.”
“There is a long waiting list for people who want slips for their boats,” Leonhardt said. “I don’t foresee anything happening on the Idaho side of the lake.”
“Another concern I have is when the storms roll in across the lake the boats need to get off the lake,” she said. “It is hard to get all boats off the lake when a storm rolls in.”
Construction is anticipated to begin in the Fall of 2023 and last approximately one year. The schedule is subject to change based on factors such as supply chain issues, material availability, weather, and permitting.
An anticipated schedule will be shared when more information is known. The details of construction impacts are not yet known. However, workers, active construction with associated equipment, dust, noise, and vibration in the vicinity of the proposed marina are anticipated.
The existing marina is expected to stay open during construction of the new marina.
To stay up to date on the project progress text “BEAR LAKE” to 833-265-7257 to opt-in to text message updates or you can call the project hotline at 877-920-0960 or email [email protected]