From Christopher Williams, Acting Superintendent, Seattle Parks and Recreation:
Dear Moorage Tenants and Project Advisory Team Members,
This is the first in a series of regular updates we are starting to keep tenants informed of upcoming operational changes, project updates and future improvements to the Leschi and Lakewood Moorages. (The background was noted; this information is on our website.)
Parks developed the following overarching goals to guide recommendations for the PATs and form the basis for our path forward:
Maintain public ownership of the moorages;
Provide safe, accessible and affordable moorage for Seattle residents;
Protect shoreline habitat;
Improve public access and community benefit without compromising security;
Create quality facilities that are competitive in the marketplace;
Enhance the sailing heritage at Leschi;
Make moorages self-sustaining for ongoing capital upkeep and maintenance; and
Ensure concessionaire quality with performance measures and regular auditing of the new concessionaire contract.
Upcoming Operational Changes
Last week, we gave 30-day notice to the current concessionaire that we will be terminating their contract. Parks will be taking over management, operations and maintenance of both the Lakewood and Leschi moorages beginning June 1, 2015. Once we get closer to the date we will provide you with contact information for the Parks staff in charge of operating these facilities. This management structure will be in place until we select a long-term concessionaire to make capital improvements and operate the moorage facilities.
Future Plans for the Moorage Facilities
Parks has determined that our goals can be best achieved by a private partner with the expertise and capital to make the marinas economically sustainable. Moorage operations are not a core line of business for Seattle Parks and Recreation and proceeding with a private investor, who has experience in this field, makes the most sense. We explored a number of options and a private/public partnership is the best option. It makes sense not only financially, but also from a customer service perspective. As you know, the condition of our moorages is getting worse by the day.
Parks will issue a new RFP for a concessionaire to take over operations of the marinas, make the necessary capital improvements and perform ongoing major maintenance. Parks will continue to involve the community in the planned RFP process and ongoing operation. The new RFP will incorporate input from the PAT processes and at least one PAT member will be directly involved with its development. Once we have selected the Operator/Developer we will work hand in hand with them from start to finish and set up a process for continual evaluation of the contract, as well as opportunities for continual check-ins with the tenant community and surrounding neighborhood.
In addition, we will work together to ensure that tenants and the community are up to date on construction timelines and moorage/neighborhood impacts.
We are committed to ensure that the new RFP will address the individual needs at both facilities through one concessionaire, while recognizing that the space and surrounding neighborhood of the Lakewood Moorage is different from the Leschi neighborhood. Much of what we heard from the PATs will be included in the RFP process, both through the RFP and through the agreement with the successful operator.
In the last year and a half, there have been a number of urgent repairs that have occurred at South Leschi:
Removed outer slips from service due to structural issues.
Modified decking on all walkways including:
Provided slip resistant (painted with granular material) high-density plywood overlay of existing decks.
Mechanically fastened overlay to existing deck sub structure.
Modified all connecting joints to include metal bottom plate to more strongly hold sections in place.
Longitudinal thread rods reattached under deck to strengthen structures to resist twisting motion.
Replaced main electrical circuit breaker panel and all breakers.
Replaced service wire and individual receptacles at each slip.
Repaired and remounted each light station at each slip.
Sincerely, Christopher Williams, Acting Superintendent, Seattle Parks and Recreation