Although Marquette's harbors are packed with ice and the weather damp and cold, it won't be long before area boaters are heading to Lake Superior to launch their crafts.
With this in mind, the Marquette City Commission took action this week to get the city's two marinas in shape.
Included was the commission approving using $201,200 to match a state waterways grant to remove the old Presque Isle Marina boat launch site and construct a new one.
The project includes vehicle/trailer parking, relocation and construction of new launch ramps, new restrooms and installation of utilities.
In addition, the commission OK'd a bid from JP Electrical Professionals Inc. of Marquette for $67,280 to reroute electrical service at the Cinder Pond Marina.
The electrical work is required because of the condemnation of the marina services building after the discovery of a large crack the length of one wall and in the foundation in March.
JP Electrical will reroute the utilities to maintain electrical service to the piers and pump-out and fuel systems after the building is demolished.
The city plans to open the marina by June 1 with temporary facilities housed in two trailers, including one containing restroom and shower facilities and the other used for an administration offices and storage of maintenance equipment.
While the Cinder Pond project is being done on the quick due to the unexpected damage to the service building, the Presque Isle Marina launch site project will be completed over the next three years.
However, boat launching will still be possible on the existing ramps while the new launch is being built to the south of the old one.
Marquette's ideal location along the south shore of Lake Superior makes both these projects vital to maintaining the quality services that local boaters have become accustomed to.
Recreational boaters as well as anglers who enjoy trolling for lake trout and salmon on the big lake use both marinas extensively, and will undoubtedly be appreciative of the improvements that are being made.