Coast Guard, City of Memphis re-open Auction Street Bridge boat ramp

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The Coast Guard and the City of Memphis have reached a lease agreement that has re-opened the Auction Street boat ramp for public access, Monday, May 11, 2009.

In 2007, an audit of Coast Guard property revealed that the Auction Street Bridge boat ramp and the adjacent property is federally owned and belongs to the Coast Guard. That prompted the closure of the ramp and cancellation of the lease agreement with the City of Memphis due to liability, safety and base security concerns.

The new lease agreement addresses the Coast Guard’s right to control parking on the property, limit access during heightened security conditions and releases the Coast Guard from liabilities associated with public use of the boat ramp. The term of the lease is 20 years and will cost the City of Memphis $10.

“We are thrilled to have come to agreement with the City of Memphis that will re-open the boat ramp and grant broader access to the Mississippi River and her tributaries to the public,” said Captain Michael Gardiner, Commander of the U.S. Coast Guard’s Sector Lower Mississippi River.

“I was very pleased to learn that the boat ramp under Auction Ave. will reopen this summer,” said Congressman Steve Cohen (D-TN-09). “I have been working diligently with Memphis city officials and the U.S. Coast Guard to come to an agreement to allow for city and public use of the ramp…and I am very pleased that I was able to help in the mediation of this conflict.”

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One Comment

  1. Barry Jacobson says:

    I would recommend that, since this ramp is located on Coast Guard Property, that to be eligible to launch, each boat must display a current VSC Decal. Several municipalities and/or park Districts in the Chicago Area have this requirement to ensure that the boat meets all required safety guidelines.
    I recommend this as I am a qualified VE in the 9WR.
    Thank you.