Permits push public beach project

By Dawn De Busk

Staff Writer

NAPLES — It wasn’t only the dropping of leaves that has given everybody a better view of Long Lake from the town’s public beach property — it was the dropping of trees.

There is a building missing, too.

The structure that was formerly Helen Dingley’s home was used in a Sunday training burn for local firefighters. A local contractor will remove the debris left behind before some substantial changes take place.

On Monday, Rick Paraschak commented to fellow Naples Board of Selectmen members how “opened up” the viewscape has become over the past two days. Paraschak was referring to the expanded area of the Naples Public Beach area — often referred to as Kent’s Landing. Earlier this year, the Town of Naples purchased the parcel adjacent to its town beach.

Now, with the clock ticking on environmental and engineering permits, town officials have set the stage to build a road and boat ramp there.

On Monday morning, Marston Tree Service, which had been hired by the town, cleared about a dozen trees and associated brush.

“I expected to get a few calls today when those trees came down,” Town Manager Derik Goodine said.

Next, Greg Reinhard Excavation will build a road and construct a boat ramp.

The construction is to take place immediately because of deadlines on permits for three different state agencies — the Army Corps of Engineers, the Maine Department of Environmental Protection, and Maine’s Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife.

During Monday night’s meeting, selectmen awarded the job bid, 3-0, to the local contractor. Reinhard’s bid was approximately $54,000.

Selectmen Tom Mayberry and Dana Watson were absent from the Halloween night meeting.

The town had fast-tracked the bid process, putting out referrals during the last week of October. Town officials contacted five general contractors, three companies accepted the paperwork, and two delivered the bids by the town’s deadline.

The other bidder, Wyman & Simpson, provided a cost that was approximately $20,000 more than Reinhard’s bid. The board opted to go for the low bidder.

By the end of the week, Reinhard Excavation will start excavating in order to build a road, and construct a year-round boat ramp at the site, Paraschak said.

The entrance of the new road will be located east of where Dingley’s house once stood, he said. According to plan, the older road and parking area to the Naples Public Beach has been phased out with curb work completed on Route 302. The boat ramp will be a permanent structure, and will provide residents and visitors with wintertime and summertime access to Long Lake, Paraschak said.

The boat launch will extend about 45 feet into the water. That area is shallow for most of the distance, and will be suitable for launching small fishing boats. The road will be designed with a “swing around” for vehicles pulling boat trailers, he said.

A few weeks ago, the town downsized the cost of the road project by narrowing the width of the roadway from the original sketches. The road will be 18-feet wide, which will be sufficient to accommodate traffic pulling through, both Goodine and Paraschak said.

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