L'ANSE - The village of L'Anse is on the verge of major upgrades to the L'Anse Marina after the village council approved a grant resolution Monday night.
The village has been awarded a $12,500 Michigan Department of Natural Resources grant, with the Downtown Development Authority contributing a $12,500 match, to conduct studies about possible options with the marina. Village Manager Bob LaFave has already been working with U.P. Engineers & Architects on possible plans that would include a much larger dock with a boardwalk jutting out into Keweenaw Bay, piers on either side of a dredged area, a harbormaster building and a possible fuel dock.
"The feeling is we don't do enough with our waterfront. There's really tremendous opportunities that are there," LaFave said after Monday's meeting, in which the council unanimously approved the resolution and agreement. "An expanded marina with facilities that could handle larger boats and more boat traffic I think would be a really good thing.
Stephen Anderson/Daily Mining Gazette
The L’Anse Marina, seen here earlier this year, will likely be the site of major upgrades starting in 2014 after a Michigan Department of Natural Resources grant resolution was approved Monday night to conduct formal feasibility studies about possible options.
"This first grant, which we were approved for, would pay for the engineering studies, feasibility studies and also to get more community input," he added. "Right now we don't really have a problem filling our marina with the boats we currently have, but we think there are some opportunities out there we're missing."
It will be a three-year process, and actual construction on the waterfront would likely begin in 2014, but Monday put the behind-the-scenes plans formally in motion.
"It's an exciting milestone," LaFave said. "There's some exciting possibilities for the future."
In other business, the council:
approved reinstating the Mazzali Agency and agent Jennifer Michelin as the village insurance agent, after conducting a request for proposal process.
approved a resolution and agreement to allow village employees to put retirement money into a Municipal Employees' Retirement System 457 plan, among several other personal retirement fund options.
heard an update on the village water project, which is progressing well at the water plant.
"Hopefully we're starting to wind down," L'Anse Water and Wastewater Superintendent Greg Fish said.
expressed appreciation to the village crew for putting up Christmas decorations.
"What you guys have up looks amazing," Trustee John VanDusen said.
approved moving the regular 6 p.m. Dec. 24 meeting to 6 p.m. on Dec. 26.