Marina expansion a watershed moment in city’s history
Even though Corpus Christi Marina was built in the 1930s, today it is a state-of-the-art operation. And with eight docks and 700 slips, it now is the largest municipal marina in Texas. The marina also boasts the state’s deepest draft, at 10 feet.
McAlester, Okla.-based Atlantic-Meeco added four modern wooden floating docks with 160 slips for boats ranging from 50 to 150 feet “to accommodate boats built now and well into the future,” marina superintendent Peter Davidson explained.
“Atlantic-Meeco’s work exceeded our expectations,” Davidson said. “Our 21st-century marina is just fantastic.”
Built to last
Davidson appreciated Atlantic-Meeco’s intimate knowledge of the area’s water depths, current, tides and wind and storm patterns, which the company called upon to select the most appropriate dock configurations and cutting-edge building materials. Having experienced several of history’s deadliest and most costly hurricanes over the years, Atlantic-Meeco built docks with GluLam fir-laminated beams “that are resilient enough to withstand the rigors of storm-surge fluctuations,” Davidson explained.
Atlantic-Meeco chose ultra-hard IPE wood decking for its resistance to fire, insects, decay and rot. With pilings that are tall enough to allow the docks to survive an otherwise devastating 16-foot surge, Davidson is confident that Corpus Christi Municipal Marina will be beautifully intact 100 years from now.
A full-service marina
The ultimate in a full-service marina, Corpus Christi increased access to the bay in several important ways. Davidson is particularly proud of the four new boat ramps, “which are state-of-the-art, with floating courtesy docks to accommodate luxury yachts with 6-foot drafts.”
The marina not only meets the needs of its regular guests and transients, but it also is welcoming the growing number of “live-aboards.” Services include vacuum waste disposal, free Internet/Wi-Fi/cable, water, pumpout and recycling as well as complete amenities such as shower and laundry at three separate facilities.
Situated in the heart of vibrant downtown Corpus Christi, the marina has a fully equipped repair yard with a 15-ton travel lift, a brokerage, two yacht clubs and dry storage. A high-tech computer office allows access to up-to-the-minute weather information and electronic navigation charts.
Davidson said that he was impressed by Atlantic-Meeco’s attention to regulatory detail, with the marina meeting or exceeding all ADA and EPA regulations. The marina was Texas’ first “clean marina,” and the city has seen valuable oyster beds and shrimp catches restored and the return of brown and white pelicans as well as endangered whooping cranes.
An instant success
This year, Corpus Christi is hosting the second annual Texas International Boat Show. The first was a spectacular success—attended by 40,000 people from around the world—with more than $200 million worth of boats and RVs on display. Nearly 100 boats sold, including three yachts that sold for prices in excess of $1 million to $3 million and one for over $10 million. Essex Finance Corp. qualified more potential buyers at this first-ever show than during the same time period at the Miami and Ft. Lauderdale shows combined, for a total of $3.4 million in boat loans in four days.
Corpus Christi Mayor Henry Garrett commented at last year’s ribbon-cutting ceremony: “This is a new era for our city.”
Citing its positive impact on the economy, Garrett said the marina sends a message to the state of Texas that Corpus Christi “is boater-friendly and will be a leading destination well into the future.”
Boats formerly moored in Houston and Florida are heading for Corpus Christi, and three prestigious brokers and two boat manufacturers are hoping to relocate there. This year, Davidson looks forward to welcoming the owners of a $60 million, 328-foot megayacht who wish to call Corpus Christi Municipal Marina their new home.
McAlester, Okla.-based Atlantic-Meeco provided this case history.