Cambridge Looks For Ways To Fill Boat Slips In Marina - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Cambridge Looks For Ways To Fill Boat Slips In Marina

CAMBRIDGE, Md.- The Cambridge municipal yacht basin was packed with seagulls Tuesday, but the same can't be said for the number of boats. Yes, it is winter, so the area is more empty than usual, but even during the summer, most of the larger slips sit empty, 80 percent of them in fact.

That has a financial impact.  In 2014, the city lost $197,000 on the marina, amounting to $1 million total in the past six years.

The shortfall has everyone looking for solutions.  The long wharf advisory committee presented several options at Monday night's city council meeting, including a $100 discount to watermen, and a $1,000 discount to those who would get 50 to 60 foot boat slips, eventually stepping it up to the full price.

Tony Thomas has owned his boat slip in the marina for about 16 years.  He said price reductions are not needed, but advertising the marina and the city is the solution.

"Now is the time to advertise, and let them know we have gas, we have diesel," Thomas noted. "There should be a brochure that tells everything about Cambridge, the restaurants, what to do here, the golf at the Hyatt. There's a lot of things to do here, it's a beautiful place to sail."

But that is not the only concern. Jim Culver has since removed his boats from the marina after they were damaged by the waves.

"The wave action can be pretty detrimental to keeping the boat in one piece," said Culver. "There's a lot of strain that goes on the dock lines, and the cleats that hold them."

The strain occasionally causes the boat to smash into walls. The advisory committee on Monday also asked for permission for boat owners to install lifts in their slips to raise them out of harm's way.

Culver and Thomas also said the bigger slips need to be dredged, because they are too shallow for vessels of that size to dock there. However, they do not want to see the marina done away with. After all, Carver said, it is what convinced him and his wife, and Mr. Thomas to move to Cambridge.

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