COLUMBUS, OH -- The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) and Governor Bob Taft today announced the receipt of a $861,383 federal grant to expand and improve the states public marina at Middle Bass Island in the western basin of Lake Erie. The award brings to $1.8 million the amount of federal grant money ODNR has received in recent months for the Middle Bass Island marina project. Ohio will match those dollars with $639,857 in state funds.
ODNR will use the combined monies to partially remove the center peninsula at the marina; install 60 new docks with electrical service to accommodate 120 boats; and repair the marina's sea walls. The project will bring to 172 the number of boat slips available for public use at the marina.
This grant will significantly improve the marina at Middle Bass Island as we develop Ohio's newest state park, Taft said. Our long-term goal is to create a state park on Middle Bass Island that meets the recreational needs of Ohioans and other visitors to this unique island environment.
Ohio was one of nine applicants nationwide (and the only Great Lakes state) to receive funding in the latest round of grants from the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service through its Boating Infrastructure Grant Program. Fifty-eight proposals were submitted for the available $4,395,115 which states may allocate to install day-use docks, boat slips, piers, mooring buoys and other structures to accommodate visiting boaters.
ODNR purchased almost 124 acres at the southern tip of the 758-acre island in May 2000, at a cost of $6.75 million. In addition to the safe harbor marina, the site includes a mile of undeveloped shoreline; glacial grooves and other natural features, including wetlands and grasslands that house several endangered species of plants and animals.
Most recent data show Ohio ranks among the top 10 boating states nationally with approximately 414,825 registered recreational watercraft. In surveys of Ohio visitors by the Ohio Division of Travel & Tourism, 62 percent of respondents identified Ohio as a great boating destination.
For Further Information Contact:
Jane Beathard, ODNR Media Relations
John Wisse, ODNR Division of Watercraft