A study of the risk for flooding and erosion at Garrison Cove town landing, on Bailey Island, estimates a cost of $308,173 to replace the ramp and armor the shoreline.
The Portland engineering firm GEI Consultants conducted the study, which was funded by a grant from a climate change-focused state program, the Community Resilience Pilot Project. The Community Resilience Pilot Project, in turn, is funded by donations to the Maine Climate Council.
Harpswell joined with the towns of Phippsburg and West Bath, as well as the Casco Bay Estuary Partnership and the New England Environmental Finance Center, to request the funds. The grant paid for analysis of one town landing or wharf in each town.
Barney Baker, coastal practice leader at GEI, presented the results of the study to the Harpswell Board of Selectmen and the community on Aug. 18. Baker began his presentation by explaining predictions for sea level rise at Garrison Cove.
Baker said that the site is not susceptible to extensive flooding, given current estimates of sea level rise in the near future, but the Maine Climate Council has recommended planning for significant sea level rise.
The proposal has two major components: replacement of the deteriorating asphalt ramp with a ramp made of concrete planks, and measures to control shoreline erosion.
To prevent erosion, the study recommends the installation of “marine mattresses” — netting filled with stone, then covered with sand and planted over. The “mattresses” would protect the shore from erosion caused by wave action.
The study recommends other improvements to the facility, such as acquiring nearby land for parking. A lack of parking limits use of the landing, and the parcel owned by the town is too small to accommodate a parking lot.
The town hopes to secure another grant for construction. “If you’re having to do all the work yourself as a town or if the money’s just not there, then you’d have to pick and choose what are the most critical things,” Baker said.
If the town must prioritize, Baker suggested that it consider replacing the heavily used boat ramp at a cost of $70,439.
The town is directing questions about the presentation to Town Planner Mark Eyerman at 207-329-2030.