DEEP: 1986 - Public Boat Launches Modernized

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Environmental Accomplishments of the Past 40 Years

Public Boat Launches Modernized


Recognizing the popularity of recreational boating in the state, DEP took steps in 1986, to make public boat launches safer, more user friendly and comfortable, and more aesthetically pleasing.

Before this date, most state boat launches were constructed employing design techniques and criteria of earlier eras. These designs were often simple paved slopes down to the water at launch sites which offered few amenities.

In 1986 however, infrastructure initiatives led to vast improvements in Connecticutís public boat launches.

First, DEP began installing grooved concrete slab ramps which replaced the old concrete planking and rebar launch pads. This design provided better traction for vehicles, offered accessibility compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and ultimately required less long term park staff maintenance.

Second, based on water conditions, the DEP also began to install either fixed or floating courtesy docks to facilitate the launching and retrieval of the increasingly wide variety of water craft.

Building off of those successes, additional features at some locations now include ramp extension systems to eliminate power-loading problems, the addition of ADA accessible walkways, improved traffic flow and parking lot layout, and solar powered area lighting.

Today, DEP provides launch access to inland and marine waters at 118 locations around the state, including 95 inland and 23 coastal launches. As time and money allow, the older style ramps are being replaced. Any renovations or new launch developments include the state-of-the-art designs and now-standard amenities including Port-a-Potties and improved signage.

Fom the Twin Lakes in Salisbury to the Thames River in Groton, and from Quaddick Lake in Thompson to the Saugatuck River in Westport and at locations in between, DEPís upgraded boat launches continue to make water access safe and convenient for the wide variety of users that make boating their pastimes.

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What You Can Do To Help
  • Be a good steward of our boat launches:
  • Please be courteous and rig or de-rig your vessel away from the ramp to reduce delays.
  • Please report vandalism, dumping and illegal activities to our ENCON police at 860-424-3333. Remember to include the date and time of the incident, location, nature of the activity, description of the vehicle or boat with plate or hull number, and description of the suspects.

"Be a responsible and courteous boater, and we all have a good day."