City of Rochester
(Wednesday, Aug. 7. 2013) – Mayor Thomas S. Richards announced today that the almost 50-year-old proposal to locate a Marina at the mouth of the Genesee River has passed a series of critical milestones as the City is now seeking a firm to begin construction of the Port of Rochester Marina this fall and is also seeking proposals from developers interested in building a harbor-side neighborhood.
“The Genesee River Plan of 1965, under Mayor Frank T. Lamb, called for the construction of a Marina and private developments that would secure Charlotte’s rightful place as one of Lake Ontario’s premier waterfront destinations,” said Mayor Richards. “It was a good idea then, and it is an even better idea now. Today, I am humbled and honored to say this idea is finally coming to fruition.”
Mayor Richards also announced that the Marina construction will include a Project Labor Agreement with local trade unions, which will control costs and increase the representation of women, minority and city-resident workers on the construction site.
The City began advertising for bids on the Marina project Monday, which sets the stage for construction to be complete in the spring of 2015. The City has also issued a Request for Qualifications seeking development proposals to convert vacant public lands between North River Street and Lake Avenue into mix of commercial and residential properties in the City’s new Marina District.
The first phase of the project calls for constructing a deep-draft marina basin that can accommodate 85 slips immediately south and west of the Port of Rochester Ferry Terminal with a river opening near the current site of the City boat launch. The basin will be surrounded by a park and public promenade that will connect the Genesee Riverway Trail to the Charlotte Pier.
North River Street will be extended to the south to provide an additional north-south access point into the Port from Latta Road, complete with sidewalks, lighting and on-street parking. In later phases of the project, a portion of the Port of Rochester Ferry Terminal will be renovated into a boater-service facility for boaters. The Marina design includes plans for future expansion of the basin to accommodate up to 157 slips.
Construction of the first phase will be conducted under a PLA similar to the agreement in place on the Midtown development. The agreement with local trade unions would set workforce goals of 20 percent minority and 6.9 percent women participation and create opportunities to realize savings through pre-determined efficiencies.
These agreements, which were developed at Mayor Richards’ insistence, are quickly becoming standard procedure for many publically funded construction projects in the Rochester area. PLAs are also in place at the Rochester Transit Service’s bus terminal project and are included in the Rochester City School District Facilities Modernization Program.
The construction bid coincides with the release of a Request for Qualifications in which the City seeks proposals to identify qualified developers interested in a 2.8-acre parcel to build the proposed harbor-side development that could include condominiums with rights to Marina slips, retail and commercial space and a possible hotel. Other City-owned parcels will be developed in later phases.
The total Marina project is estimated to cost $20 million, with the first phase estimated at $16.5 million. Funding sources include proceeds from the sale of the Hemlock and Canadice Lakes watershed to the State, Federal and State grants and the City’s Capital Improvement Program.
The Marina will be a catalyst for development that will eventually create 2,500 construction jobs and 300 permanent jobs. It will create a new stretch of waterfront property, increasing the value of public land that is currently vacant and not generating tax revenue.
Together, the Marina and associated private developments will strengthen the Port of Rochester’s reputation as a Great Lakes destination. These projects will transform an under-developed public waterfront area into a year-round resource that will complement other significant public amenities, including Ontario Beach Park, the Terminal Building, the Charlotte Pier and the Charlotte Genesee Lighthouse.
News Media: For more information, contact Paul Holahan, Commissioner of Environmental Services at 428-6855.