The timeline for the completion of construction of the new large boat docks in La Crosse’s Riverside Park, still up in the air – or in the water.
“We’ve lost some ground because the water has been rising for about three weeks,” Jim Flottmeyer, project specialist with the La Crosse Department of Parks, Recreation and Forestry, said on La Crosse Talk PM on Tuesday. “So we are working on an alternative to be able to dock there. They can still use the old part of that, which if we have a boat here at a time, it works fine.
The idea behind the $2.5 million project is to allow two of the big boats and paddle steamers to be able to dock at Riverside Park at the same time. The earliest date that will occur is July 21, when the Viking cruise ship and the American Countess paddle steamer will be in town.
“I believe their big ship is 400 feet long,” Flottmeyer said of the US Queen ships, “and the Vikings cruise ship is 450 feet long. So it was going to be difficult to adapt them both to the old levy. That’s why we decided to add State Street north.
This plan was implemented 4 to 5 years ago, Flottmeyer said. And although the city paid up front to install the docks, both companies will be involved in more ways than one.
Flottmeyer said the companies have invested $300,000 to help pay the costs, but will also continue to make annual payments.
“The great thing about this project is that American Queen Voyages and Viking Cruise Lines gave us money for the construction and gave us money every year for the maintenance of this addition,” did he declare.