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Gloucester Marina Feasibility Study

City of Gloucester - Gloucester, MA


CLE Engineering, Inc. provided professional services to the City of Gloucester for an engineering and marketing feasibility assessment for a 450’ floating breakwater marina at four alternative locations. An analysis was made at each of the sites considering wave conditions, regulatory requirements, capital costs, operating costs, transient slip demand, and user convenience. The locations were also evaluated with respect to existing activities within Gloucester Harbor to maintain those key uses while still providing a desirable location for recreational users.

The three sites located in the Gloucester Outer Harbor are all susceptible to similar wave conditions with water depths up to 35 ft. These areas have a history of significant storm events. Based on the site exposures, CLE recommended that in any of these locations, the facility design include structures that are removable or designed to survive such impacts. CLE also recommended a wave attenuation structure to make any of the sites viable for transient vessels.

In order to evaluate marketing feasibility and potential revenues, CLE partnered with FXM Associates. FXM provided projected revenues based on anticipated usage. CLE developed detailed capital and operating costs to compare with projected revenues for the marina. CLE also provided a summary of local, state and federal regulatory approvals required at each of the sites, including identification of allowed uses with the Designated Port Area (DPA). CLE attended several meetings with the Waterways Board to solicit feedback and present findings. A report of findings was presented by CLE to the Waterways Board for their use in assessing the feasibility of the floating breakwater.