Official SUNY ESF DLA Off-Campus Blog

the highly debated Oak Bluffs fishing pier proposal by esfdla
November 4, 2010, 3:36 pm
Filed under: Martha's Vineyard 2010

The proposed construction of a public fishing pier in downtown Oak Bluffs has been the cause of many heated debates among island residents.  At public hearings over the past few weeks those in favor and those against the project have made numerous valid points.  The project proposal calls for a handicap accessible “L” shaped fishing pier extending 317 feet into the Nantucket Sound.  The Martha’s Vineyard Commission is working to produce a Development of Regional Impact statement for the project.  The location of the pier as proposed is on the north side of the public beach in between the Steamship Authority ferry terminal and the entrance to the Oak Bluffs Harbor which can be seen in the map below.

The project is proposed on the north side public beach because the water depth and topography are ideal.  The north side also has a sea wall, public restroom, and boardwalk that are all going to be redone in the near future.  Below are two images from the north side public beach.

Many feel the south side is a better placement for the pier taking congestion away from the steamship authority ferry terminal, however water depth is shallower and the presence of  eelgrass would require the pier to be shorter in length.  The north and south sides of the public beach are labeled in the map above.  Below photographs from the south side public beach.

Please take a minute to read some voices of the vineyard regarding this project.

Those in Favor of the Pier Say…

+ Oak Bluffs has plans to redevelop the public restrooms, sea wall, and boardwalk on the north side.  This is an opportunity to create a cohesive group of projects that work together

+ This is an opportunity for recreation in town, the pier would be in walking distance for residents and seasonal renters

+ The pier would provide accessibility for those who enjoy finishing but can not navigate a sandy terrain

+ For those who can not afford boats, the ability to fish would still available

+ The pier would create a teaching opportunity for children and provide multi-generational bonding

Those Against the Construction of the Pier Say…

Construction of  the pier would cause excess noise, parking issues, loitering, and substance abuse issues

– Widespread swimming would prevent fish from staying in the area

– Trash collection would attract skunks (a real issue in Oak Bluffs), rats, and birds

– Construction would disrupt the aquatic environment and displace swimmers

Now that you have heard many opinions of the project, I am asking for your opinion.  Your vote will be anonymous, non-binding, and much appreciated.



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[…] November 30, 2010, 11:25 am Filed under: Martha's Vineyard 2010 In relation to the highly debated Oak Bluffs fishing pier proposal post from November 4th, the Martha’s Vineyard Commission has approved the pier project and […]

Pingback by update: State-financed oak bluffs fishing pier approved « Official SUNY ESF DLA Off-Campus Blog

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