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Contact: Julie Van Stappen, 715-779-3398, x1601Apostle Islands NL- The National Park Service (NPS) will replace the failing wooden crib docks at the Raspberry Island Light Station this summer. The successful bidder on the project is Marine Tech LLC., Duluth, Minnesota. They plan to start demolition and construction on the west dock as soon as Lake Superior allows and hope to finish that portion of the project by the end of June. Once the west dock is complete, work will begin on the east dock. At this time, Apostle Islands Cruises will be able to access the west dock; however, it will remain closed to the general public until the entire project is complete, due to safety concerns. The full project is planned to be completed by the end of September. Boaters are encouraged to use beach access, available at the sandspit, ¾ of a mile from the light station along a trail through lovely old-growth forest. Light station tours by Apostle Islands National Lakeshore park rangers will continue to be available.
The new docks will be within the footprint of the historic docks, but slightly narrower. This will increase docking space between the east and west dock piers, improving access and boater safety. The docks will have galvanized steel bin wall construction with a concrete cap. This type of construction is being used throughout the Lakeshore and is estimated to last more than twice as long as wooden crib docks. In addition, similar to other docks the NPS has replaced in recent years, the surface of the new docks would be approximately 10-12 inches lower than the existing structures, but be more functional than the existing height under both high and lower water conditions, an adaptation to climate change. The dock project has all the required permits and is in compliance with the National Historic Preservation Act and the National Environmental Policy Act.