DEEP: DEEP Awarded $494,650 Federal Grant from US Fish & Wildlife Service for Construction of a Recreational Boat Marina in Wethersfield

2012 Press Release
January 25, 2012
DEEP Awarded $494,650 Federal Grant from US Fish & Wildlife Service for Construction of a Recreational Boat Marina in Wethersfield
State will Partner with Town of Wethersfield
The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) today announced it has been awarded a $494,650 grant from the Department of Interior’s Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS) to fund the construction of a recreational boat marina in the Town of Wethersfield.  The marina will consist of seven transient (those staying 10 days or less) slips and 51 moorings designated for the use of transient recreational vessels.  The grant was awarded through the USFWS Boating Infrastructure Grant (BIG) Program.  The total cost of the projects is estimated to be $793,050 with the Town of Wethersfield providing $298,400.

“We are grateful to the Department of Interior for awarding us this grant and we look forward to working with the Town of Wethersfield as they build a marina that has long been sought by boaters,” said DEEP Deputy Commissioner Susan Frechette.  “Wethersfield Cove is a beautiful recreational area and allowing increased public access will be a benefit to nearby residents and visitors alike.”

“We are excited to get this grant because it will help us improve our boating facilities at Wethersfield Cove to give visitors a safe and comfortable facility for enjoying this coastal resource,” said Jeff Bridges, Wethersfield Town Manager.  “It will also favorably impact the local economy through attracting tourists via transient boating.”

Wethersfield Cove Marina Project

The proposed plan for the Wethersfield Cove Marina consists of seven dock side transient berths and 51 moorings designated for transient vessels using the sheltered harbor.  Plans include Americans with Disabilities Act accessible walkways as well as recreational fishing opportunities.  The construction will transform the Wethersfield Municipal Marina into a full functional, comfortable and tranquil “safe harbor” destination for boaters.  The design of the facilities has focused on creating a destination for day sailors and those using the Long Island Sound portion of the intercoastal waterway. 

Partners to the project besides DEEP include the US Army Corps of Engineers, the Department of Transportation, the Metropolitan District Commission, Riverfront Recapture, Wethersfield Cove Yacht Club, and local environmental groups. 

Background on the Federal Boating Infrastructure Grant Program

The Boating Infrastructure Grant Program (BIG) provides grant funds to construct, renovate, and maintain tie-up facilities with features for transient boaters in vessels 26 feet or more in length, and to produce and distribute information and educational materials about the program.

Funding for the BIG program comes from the Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund, formerly known as the Aquatic Resources Trust Fund, which boaters and manufacturers support through excise and other taxes on certain fishing and boating equipment and boat fuel.
Grant funds are competitively disbursed to states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, American Samoa, Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands and the U.S. Virgin Islands for approved grants up to 75% of the project costs.

Previously approved & completed BIG Projects in Connecticut
  • Reynolds Garage & Marine, Lyme – 2 slips
  • City of New Haven – 3 moorings
  • City of New London – 15 moorings
  • City of Norwalk – 9 moorings, dinghy dock
  • Thamesport Marina, New London – 4 slips
  • Chrisholm Marina, Chester – 6 slips
  • Oak Leaf Marina, Old Saybrook – upland bathhouse