USA InvestCo has begun construction of Port City Marina, a 204-slip property in downtown Wilmington, N.C. The marina is strategically positioned downtown to take of advantage of a growing riverfront community and is conveniently located within walking distance of the historic district, offering boaters access to a wide variety of shops, restaurants and other attractions. It is the centerpiece in a development that will include two restaurants and a hotel.
Developers hope to have the first 40 to 60 slips open by late May or early June, just in time for the summer boating season. The remainder will be built out in phases as demand increases. The floating concrete slips are being built to withstand hurricane force winds and tides, making this an attractive hurricane hole for locals and transients alike.
In this period of low economic growth when many marinas are only half full, why would someone start construction on a new facility? When asked, Larry Rizzo of Port City Marina answers simply, “To make the best of the bleakest of times.” Although this is a bit of an over simplification, the point is they are planning for the future. USA InvestCo is looking at the long-term future of the Wilmington waterfront and believes a marina is a key part of that future. Port City Marina is the cornerstone of a larger plan for a growing community.
The construction site is on the old Almont shipping terminal property and is reclaiming land spoiled by years of industrial waste. The dredging will remove tons of spoiled earth, leaving the site clean once again. The marina will also offer recycling waste disposal for boaters, something that is rare in marinas at this time, making this an all around clean project for the waterfront.
Slips will range in size from 40 to 130 feet, with a mean depth of 10 feet inside the basin and 25 feet on the outside floating docks. For large vessels, the 560-foot-long front dock can accommodate vessels of over 130 feet.
Complimentary pump out, high-speed wi-fi and cable TV will be available at every slip as well. A third of the slips are being reserved for transient use with the remainder available for monthly or yearly lease. Although not immediately planned, some slips may be available for sale in the future. Both ethanol free gasoline and diesel will be available on the front dock.
A lounge with TV, Internet and laundry is planned, along with a concierge desk and marina store with ATM. An office center will also be available with Fax and copy service, mail and package drop off, and a notary available by appointment for a fee. Local shuttle service to downtown Wilmington and the nearby airport will be available as well.
A unique feature of this project is that it will be tied in with Wilmington’s Riverwalk – a city-maintained, public access, scenic boardwalk running along the downtown riverfront through. The section of Riverwalk adjacent to the marina will be called Artwalk and be open for local craft persons and artists to display and sell their crafts. To the north of the new marina, a section called Naturewalk is being built with the help of the N.C. Aquariums. It will focus on the river’s natural resources and wildlife.
For more information, visit the marina’s website: www.portcitymarina.com.