LANSING, Mich. — State Sen. Dan Lauwers recently voted in favor of legislation that would fund the state’s commitment for critical economic development projects in Lexington.
Senate Bill 7, now Public Act 1 of 2023 after being signed into law, includes $8 million for improvements to the Lexington Marina, boardwalk, and surrounding facilities as part of a $20 million collaboration between local, state and federal governments. The federal government also awarded $9 million to make critical upgrades to the breakwater structure.
The investment is expected to have an economic impact of more than $145 million on the area.
“This money, paired with federal funding, will truly be transformative for the area,” said Lauwers, R-Brockway Township. “These improvements will increase recreation possibilities and be an incredible economic boost for local businesses. It really will be a game-changing effort for the region.”
Among other efforts, the project upgrades will include:
- Dredging, and demolition of obsolete floating dockage and utilities.
- Construction of new harbor dockage and an ADA-compliant gangway.
- Much-needed improvements to the aging breakwater structure.
- Installation of electrical, ice suppression, potable water, marine fuel, and pump out systems.
- Installation of a dry fire standpipe to improve emergency response times.
The plan would also integrate the adjacent Lexington Boardwalk Marina into the project in an effort to further expand recreation activities in the area.
Lauwers stressed the importance of this project because in addition to growing recreational access in the area, it also includes critical public safety enhancements as well.
“Lexington Marina is one of the most popular recreational harbors in the state, but it is also a critical refuge on the Lake Huron coastline for recreational and emergency services boats during storms or high winds,” Lauwers said. “The mouth of the St. Clair River is approximately 21 miles south and the nearest harbor is another 11 miles north. Boaters seeking safety during bad weather often turn to Lexington Harbor, and this project will improve the ability to accommodate this traffic.”
The senator added that he’s happy with the collaboration between levels of government and relieved to see the marina get the funding it needs to make the necessary upgrades.
“These developments have been years in the making, and I am happy to see the funding finally coming together,” Lauwers said. “I am glad to see the governor quickly sign this into law so we can get this project started — I know I’m not alone in looking forward to the final product.”