Duluth Mayor Proposes Plan to Move Irving Ore Boat to Make Way for Parking

By KBJR News 1

August 7, 2013 Updated Aug 7, 2013 at 11:39 PM CDT

Duluth, MN (NNCNOW.com) - With an eye towards saving millions of dollars Mayor Don Ness is floating the idea of moving the William Irvin Ore Boat and filling in the slip where it is now berthed.

Mayor Ness says the Bayfront is facing three significant problems that will be costly to fix.

The first is a failing sea wall which would cost about $3 million to fix.

The second problem is the ever failing Blue Slip bridge which connects canal park with the DECC.

Mayor Ness says a permanent fix would cost $3.3 million.

He also says controlling the contamination from the Minnesota Slip would cost the city $7 million.

The mayor's idea involves moving the William Irvin Boat attraction to the other side of the DECC adjacent to Bayfront festival park, dismantle the Blue Slip Bridge and then filling in the slip to make way for parking.

"Right now the Irvin is surrounded by parking lots and it's not a great experience and its an iconic fixture in the canal park area but it also places a huge barrier between canal park and the DECC," said Ness.

"If that would become a parking lot I think it would really benefit all the businesses like hotels, restaurants, everyone down here," said Marissa Foley, manager at the Suites Hotel Waterfront Place.

Mayor Ness also says the plan would greatly improve pedestrian access to the lake walk.

However, he says this is just an idea at this point and he is looking for other ways to improve canal park.

Posted to the web by Kati Anderson.