Construction starts on rebuilding public boat launch at Point Breeze

Posted 20 September 2021 at 3:21 pm

$627,000 project includes new boat ramp and abutment, sloping of roadway to the new boat ramp, and regrading remaining portion of roadway

Rendering courtesy of Lake Ontario Resiliency and Economic Development Initiative: The rebuilt boat launch will have floating walkways that tie into the concrete ramp.

Press Release, New York Department of State

CARLTON – The New York Department of State announced the start of construction of a $627,000 resiliency project awarded to Orleans County, through the State’s Resiliency and Economic Development Initiative (REDI).

The Point Breeze Boat Launch is located near the mouth of Oak Orchard Creek, within Oak Orchard Harbor, in the Town of Carlton. During the historic flooding of 2019, the boat ramp became submerged, preventing access to the floating docks, and forcing the boat launch to be closed.

This project seeks to mitigate future flooding of the Point Breeze Boat Launch, ensuring recreational boaters have continued access to the dock system, the boat launch ramps, and to local businesses and popular tourist attractions. The boat launch, which was open to the public this season, is now closed in preparation for construction and will reopen in the Spring of 2022.

New York State Secretary of State Rossana Rosado said, “Through the REDI initiative, we are helping Lake Ontario communities revitalize their waterfronts and strengthen resiliency against future flooding and low water events as well as climate change. The improvements underway at Carlton’s Point Breeze Boat Launch will help enhance accessibility to the docks and create safer and more flood resilient conditions for residents and visitors.  The Department of State is proud to work with Orleans County and its elected officials to help protect this important recreational asset and bolster the local economy.”

Resiliency measures to be implemented in this project include:

  • Installation of new boat ramp and abutment above high water level;
  • Sloping of roadway to the new boat ramp; and
  • Regrading remaining portion of roadway.

State Senator Robert Ortt said, “I thank New York State and the Lake Ontario REDI Commission for addressing the need for this new boat launch at Breeze Point. By installing this improved launch, we are resolving a water access issue that exists for local boaters during flooding events. With this update, boaters will now spend less time on the road searching for different launch sites during times of high water, and more time on the water with family and friends enjoying our state’s valuable resources.”

Assemblyman Stephen Hawley said, ​“When it comes to projects like the Point Breeze Boat Launch site, time is of the essence. We saw how urgent the need for this work was in 2019 when the boat ramp became submerged, so I am glad this project will be breaking ground shortly so that the launch can reopen as planned in the spring of 2022.”

Orleans County Legislature Chairman Lynn Johnson said, “The Point Breeze Boat Launch provides a gateway to Oak Orchard Creek and Lake Ontario for economic, recreational and tourist activities. During the Lake Ontario high water events of 2017 and 2019 the Point Breeze Boat Launch became partially submerged resulting in limited access to safely launch boats. Thanks to the efforts of the REDI Commission, we can fortify a very important piece of County infrastructure and sustain long-term use. These improvements will make our infrastructure more resilient to future high-water events while improving our ability to support economic and recreational activities.”

Town of Carlton Supervisor Gayle Ashbery said, “When the Point Breeze Boat Launch is forced to be closed during high water events, the businesses that call Oak Orchard Harbor home pay the price. The work that is being undertaken will support our local businesses by ensuring that the launch remain open and accessible to both residents and visitors of Carlton. REDI continues to show the positive path that can be taken when state and local governments work in tandem.”

In response to the extended pattern of flooding along the shores of Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River, REDI was created to increase the resilience of shoreline communities and bolster economic development in the region. Five REDI Regional Planning Committees, comprised of representatives from eight counties (Niagara and Orleans, Monroe, Wayne, Cayuga and Oswego, and Jefferson and St. Lawrence) were established to identify local priorities, at-risk infrastructure and other assets, and public safety concerns.

The REDI Commission allocated $20 million for homeowner assistance, $30 million to improve the resiliency of businesses, and $15 million toward a regional dredging effort that will benefit each of the eight counties in the REDI regions. The remaining $235 million has been allocated towards local and regional projects that advance and exemplify the REDI mission.