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Boat Ramp and Marina Upgrades on Cape Cod, Massachusetts

By Paul Gately

Boaters, kayakers and other watercraft enthusiasts can look forward to planned shoreline improvements in Pocasset and Monument Beach in Bourne. The improvements will likely lead to more boaters using the new ramp at the beach. The implications could lead to a need for more boat storage, as well.

The Bourne Shore and Harbor Committee has endorsed a plan that calls for redesigning and improving the Hen Cove boat landing off Circuit Avenue below Pocasset Heights. At the same time, the committee is also continuing its push to overhaul the Monument Beach Marina.

Town officials have also given their blessing to the Pocasset Water Quality Coalition’s plans to install three rain gardens around streets surrounding Hen Cove as a way of lessening the damage of heavy stormwater runoff.

Hen Cove is one of three shoreline improvement proposals for south of the Cape Cod Canal.

Currently being engineered by BSC Group of West Yarmouth, the Hen Cove project would make it easier to launch and retrieve boats and potentially accommodate overflow from the nearby and more popular Barlows Landing ramp, members said May 17.

The Pocasset Heights ramp is in an area that is prone to heavy flooding. The ramp was first OK’d by then Massachusetts Department of Public Works in 1941. The neighborhood for decades has been a seasonal vacation spot.

“The plan is still in our conversation stage,” Shore and Harbor Chair Rich Libin said at the board’s May 17 meeting. “We need to secure estimates for a project permit and look at dredging needs next to the ramp. The ramp is chewed up on the bottom and has potholes and silt.”

The committee’s endorsement assures a distinct path forward at a time of increased post-COVID-19 boating popularity and the need to pay attention to municipal support facilities.

Harbormaster Chris Southwood said the ramp “is best used at mid-and-high tides. It gradually flattens out in the water with not much pitch. It’s totallyusable, but many people are not using it in a correct way.”

The proposed facility would feature pre-cast concrete planks, starting 65 feet from the Circuit Avenue pavement.

“We need to get real good cost estimates,” Southwood said. “And look forward to the permitting phase.”

Renewed Monument Beach Marina upgrades

Shore and harbor members are also considering changes to the popular Monument Beach Marina off Shore Road to include amenities similar to those at larger nearby commercial marinas.

Plans call for demolishing the former white-washed concrete-block snack bar that now serves as a storage area for the town’s Department of Natural Resources. The pier would be upgraded and might be extended into Phinneys Harbor. Pilings would be replaced.

Paul Gately is a contributor to the Cape Cod Times in Massachusetts.

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