THE first stage the $1.6 million Hastings boat ramp upgrade has been completed despite teething problems which included the collapse of the watertight four-metre-high “coffer dam” in September.
The steel wall, erected to create a dry area for workers building the ramp’s outer base, collapsed under the weight of higher-than-expect tides causing delays in completing the four-lane ramp which is potentially the busiest on Western Port (“Wall collapse leaves fishers high and dry” The News 22/9/20).
Construction crews then had to work overtime to get the ramp ready to open last week – midway through the snapper season.
Fishing and Boating Minister Melissa Horne and new Cerberus Ward councillor Lisa Dixon opened the 40-metre-long ramp which extends further into the bay than the one it replaced. Dredging is scheduled for mid-next year as part of the ramps’ second stage.
The government says its Better Boating Fund will re-spend the $31 million collected each year from marine licences and registrations on recreational boating. Boaters are invited to contribute to the Victorian Recreational Boating Strategy which will determine the areas of recreational boating to benefit.