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    Monday, November 28, 2022

    Montville awarded grant funding for boat dock, fishing pier project

    Montville ― The Planning and Zoning Commission gave a favorable review of a proposed boat launch and fishing pier project on town-owned property at 55 Dockett Road at a meeting Tuesday night.

    A grant from the federal government would cover 75% percent of the $885,000 project.

    Kyle Haubert from CLA Engineers explained to the commission on Tuesday, the project as it currently stands consists of a 40-foot long and 8-foot wide wooden floating dock where the current dock stands.

    The proposed 136-foot long fishing pier is slated to be built further down the property. At the end of the wooden fishing pier will be two octagonal platforms, 16-feet long on each side, for people to sit and stand while they fish.

    The parking lot would be fully paved and include spots for trailers. The site will be ADA accessible as well.

    The motion passed in a 7-1 vote, with Anthony Siragusa the lone commissioner voting against it. Commissioner Chuck Longton was absent from the meeting.

    The favorable review sends the proposal to the finance committee to review the funding and then to the Town Council for final review. If approved by the council, the Planning and Zoning commission will be presented with the project again to approve a site plan.

    Documented by a memorandum for the record, Planning Director Liz Burdick explained to the commission Tuesday night that the project was selected by the state’s Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) to receive pass-through grant funding from the federal government.

    The two-phase project is estimated to cost $525,000 for the boat launch renovations, for which the town will be entirely responsible.

    The fishing pier and associated site improvements ― such as the parking lot, trash cans, lighting fixtures ― is estimated to cost $885,000. The grant funding would cover 75% of Phase 2, leaving the town responsible for the remaining 25%, or an estimated $221,250.

    In total, the town is estimated to pay $746,000 for the project as it currently stands. If the town does not approve the plan with the grant funding, it will be left on its own to repair the boat launch, with an estimated cost of $745,000. Burdick said the launch is in rough condition.

    The project was initiated in 2020 when Uncasville, LLC gifted the town a 99-year lease for a portion of 55 Dock Road, where the current boat launch exists. The town planner at the time, Marcia Vlaun, had CLA engineers draft plans to improve the existing boat launch and the parking lot, as well as a plan for a new fishing pier.

    Since the boat launch renovations were the priority, the project was split into two phases. Phase 1 was set to be just the boat launch, with an estimated cost of $745,000, which is $220,000 more than the current estimate. Phase 2 was slated to include the fishing pier with a $605,000 estimated price tag.

    After the planning department reached out to DEEP in the fall of 2021, DEEP’s boating division contacted the department in Feb. 2022. The boating division received the cost estimates for the project and forwarded them to Fisheries Biologist II and Federal Aid Coordinator, Tony Petrillo, with the DEEP and the Bureau of Natural Resources.

    Petrillo and his colleague, David Molnar, met with Burdick and CLA engineers in April at the site to discuss the details of the project. The town was awarded the grant funding shortly thereafter.


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