Calif. marina gets $18 million makeover

MARTINEZ, Calif. – An $18 million renovation project is underway at the Martinez, Calif., Marina that will include reconstructing docks and breakwater, replacing the fuel dock and fuel storage tanks and an extensive dredging project, the Contra Costa Times reported in a story yesterday.

City officials in Martinez have put control of the project in the hands of Pacific Marina Development and Almar Marina Management. The team will officially take over Oct. 1 under a short-term management agreement, according to the newspaper.

Under the Martinez lease, either party can opt out of the agreement after two years. During that time, no construction will take place, although engineering studies will be conducted, the newspaper reported.

As it stands today, two of the five docks at the marina are out of commission. Of the 350 slips available, 217 are occupied, according to the Times.

“Everybody talks about it being a diamond in the rough, and it absolutely is,” Robert Barker, a member of the Martinez Marina Commission, told the Times. “It’s halfway between San Francisco and the Delta, and the Delta is one of the finest freshwater cruising grounds for fishermen and boaters in the world.”

However, the project comes with financial baggage dating back to the 1960s. Since that time, the city has accrued a roughly $3 million debt for old loans, and $2.9 million will be added as the city plans to borrow more money from the state Department of Boating and Waterways, the newspaper reported.

Working with marinas in debt is the type of project Pacific/Almar knows well. The company oversees the Richmond, Oakland and Treasure Island marinas in Northern California, formerly municipally run facilities marred by financial woes.

To read the full story at the Contra Costa Times Web site, click here. Readers will need to complete the Times’ free registration process to access the article.

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