Chatham Receives State Coastal Resiliency Grant for Stage Harbor Pier Reconstruction

CHATHAM – More than $3.8 million in funding has been awarded by the state to the Cape Cod Region and several local communities to support coastal resiliency and the maritime economy.

The town of Chatham received $150,000 through the state’s Seaport Economic Council to fund the design, engineering and permitting efforts for the reconstruction of the Trap Dock Pier, a commercial fish offloading facility on Stage Harbor.

“We were very pleased to hear that the Seaport Economic Council found it a worthy project,” said Ted Keon, the town’s Coastal Resources Manager. “We felt it definitely fit in to the goals of this program of the current administration.”

The town purchased the pier a few years ago to preserve a working fish offloading facility.

“It is an existing, somewhat deteriorated, timber fish offloading pier. It has been in that kind of use for a number of years,” Keon said. “It definitely needs some attention, to put it mildly.”

Keon says the project will help to solidify Stage Harbor as a secondary port in town behind Chatham Harbor.

Stage Harbor has always been the secondary port in Chatham and is often used when the seasons change and different species are fished.

“Often they go to target a different type of fish during the winter months and head south and Stage Harbor becomes the preferred port in many cases for that type of use,” Keon said.

The reconstructed pier would also help provide an alternative if Chatham Harbor and the Chatham Inlets are in tough navigational shape.

“Maintaining two ports and offloading facilities is really critical for our fishing industry,” Keon said.

Preliminary designs have been completed and the project will now move into the detailed design and permitting phase of the project.

Keon said he would have liked the project to be completed yesterday, but expects the reconstruction to be finished within the next few years.

The town is also working with the Stage Harbor Yacht Club, who owns an adjacent pier, to work on reconstruction of both piers together.

Other local awards from the Seaport Economic Council are listed below.

Cape Cod Cooperative Extension – $317,020         

The Cape Cod Cooperative Extension will enable the protection of coastal businesses, homes, property and infrastructure by precisely identifying and mapping “storm tide pathways,” the lowest elevation where water will begin to flow inland during a flood event. This project will provide field-verified data on where, when, and how storm surge and floodwaters approach and then inundate coastal communities. 

Town of Eastham – $80,000

Eastham will use this award for facilitating, planning and developing a Municipal Harbor and Waterways Management Plan to understand the greatest uses and needs of the town’s mooring area, as well as understanding future coastal changes to these areas due to storm surge.             

Town of Nantucket – $1,000,000     

The town of Nantucket will use this award to support improvements to the Town Pier, Harbormaster’s office, which supports 13,500 transient vessels each season and 45 ferry transits each day in season. The facility is comprised of 75 recreational slips and 20 slips assigned to commercial businesses such as; mooring providers, fishing charters, environmental habitat charters, boat rentals and a vessel towing company. Nantucket will fund replacement of the Harbormaster’s office, boater- public bathroom and shower facilities.                    

Town of Plymouth – $1,000,000                              

Plymouth will use the award to create the Maritime Facility. The existing Harbormaster Facility is in poor condition with no bathroom facilities for the staff of the public, limited work space, and a variety of safety hazards. The harbor itself has approximately 1000 moorings and slips for both recreational and commercial boating for catching lobster, charter fishing, whale watching and aquaculture. The award will fund the new facility which will include transient boater facilities, public restrooms, and Harbormaster staff. The Maritime Facility will provide increased accessibility and support to all the commercial and recreational activities of Plymouth Harbor. 

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