Excessive silt in the Turning Basin has made it difficult, and sometimes impossible, for larger boats to sail or motor into this area of the River, whether as part of a day’s excursion for shopping and lunch in Petaluma or as part of one of the many water-based events such as the Holiday Lighted Boat Parade.
The silt buildup has also caused problems for those wanting to launch kayaks, stand-up paddleboards, and other small watercraft from the docks adjacent to the River Plaza shopping center. The docks and their associated pilings desperately need to be renovated, but that can’t happen with high silt levels.
A local, river-based nonprofit – Petaluma Small Craft Center (PSCC)– is particularly eager for the dredging to take place so that its boat rental center, The Floathouse, can operate safely at any tide, providing year round river access to all. Once the Turning Basin is dredged, they can move ahead with their plans.
Removing silt will deepen the Turning Basin waters, providing habitat for a wider variety of fish and birds while providing better flood protection. That makes dredging a boon not only for boaters, but also for anglers, wildlife enthusiasts, riverfront businesses, and anyone who enjoys the river view.
Dredging means better recreation opportunities for more people, a revitalized riverfront economy and experience, and a riverfront area that’s better protected from rising sea levels and flooding.
For more information on the Turning Basin Dredging & Dock Restoration (2022), CLICK HERE.