Revamped boat ramps hailed in New Bedford

By Dan McDonald
NEW BEDFORD — Lawmakers marked the rehabilitation of two South End boat ramps Friday.
The ramps, located on opposite sides of the city’s South End peninsula — one is on West Rodney French Boulevard, the other on East Rodney French Boulevard — were previously in disrepair and narrower, said Rep. Antonio F.D. Cabral, D-New Bedford. A $488,000 environmental bond signed by Gov. Deval Patrick in 2008 changed that.
Fishermen and shellfishermen who use the two ramps generate about $5 million worth of product annually, both Cabral and Mayor Scott W. Lang said Friday. Recreational boaters also frequent the ramps.
The Clarks Cove facility on West Rodney French Boulevard was completely reconstructed and a dock was added. That site can accommodate 22 vehicles with trailers. The East Rodney French Boulevard facility was also reconstructed. It can accommodate 30 vehicles with trailers.
“In addition to being the No. 1 fishing port in the nation, the port of New Bedford offers tremendous opportunities for recreational boating,” Lang said. “The reconstruction of the East and West Rodney French Boulevard boat ramps has greatly improved access for the many recreational boaters who enjoy New Bedford Harbor and the surrounding waters.”
Said Cabral: “I fought to repair and improve the East and West Rodney French Boulevard boat ramps both for residents who rely on them for income and for those who enjoy the recreational activities the ramps provide access to. It’s great to celebrate the completion of this project, which is vital to fishermen and recreational boats alike.”
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August 13, 2011 12:00 AM
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