By ABBEY KUNKLE
Special to the PRESS
Monday afternoon, the South Padre Island Shoreline Task Force again addressed the issue of public access, specifically boater access, to the Laguna Madre. The City Council recently approved the Shoreline Task Force recommendation to proceed with grant applications for a marina project at Corral Street.
Chairman Paul Munarriz said the City is in dire need of boat launch ramps and parking to support it. The topic came up due to complaints this past summer. With limited space available to provide that service, and the task force recently set their sights on land available at Corral Street to be developed into a marina facility. Another possibility previously discussed included the continuation of improvements at the Polaris Street boat ramp, however, the task force expressed that this was only a short-term solution in a residential area that would be limited in expansion. They agreed that improvements should continue but indicated that they should begin planning a long-term solution.
In regards to funding the project, Munarriz opened discussion about specific bayside streets to recommend for potential sale by the City. This has been an ongoing discussion, and recent talk of this subject has evolved into a plan of selling “unusable” street end right-of-ways to bring money to the City that could aid in the development of the marina facility. Street ends such as Kingfish and Whiting Streets have been described as unusable for the public because they generally serve one property and appear to be used as more of a parking lot than as a right-of-way. Kingfish Street, specifically, has a private ramp at the end of the street. The sale of these street ends could bring in immediate revenue as well as additional property tax revenue in the future.
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