Construction to renovate Langsdorf Landing boat ramp on the Columbia River in the Vancouver Lake lowlands will start in November 2012 and is scheduled to be done four months later.
Penny Warren, a lands manager for the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, said her agency will start the process for getting the necessary permits to rebuild the popular ramp immediately.
"This project's been ready to go in engineering for a while, so we think we can get the permits in time to start in November 2012,'' Warren said.
Work in the water only can be done in winter. If the permits are not in hand by November 2012, the schedule then slips a year, she added.
The state Recreation and Conservation Office announced last week a grant of $753,000 for Langsdorf Landing, also known at the Caterpillar Island or Shillapoo ramp.
The single-lane, concrete plank ramp is off Lower River Road. It has an adjacent gravel parking lot, plus an overflow lot across Lower River Road.
Warren said a second overflow lot will be added immediately across the road from Langsdorf Landing. That lot will be gravel with enough room for 18 truck-trailers or 36 individual automobiles.
While the launching ramp will remain a single lane, it will be wider. The ramp also will be 128 feet of concrete, armored on both sides and at the end.
The existing ramp has a large hole at the end of the concrete planks caused by boaters powering on to their trailers.
Langsdorf also will get a boarding float and handicap-accessible facilities, she said.
Some of the better spring chinook fishing in the lower Columbia occurs on the west side of Caterpillar Island. Good fall chinook fishing can be found a few miles downstream of the ramp.
Launching at the ramp also is free for holders of state hunting or fishing licenses.
"There's no other no-pay ramp within 20 miles,'' said Wil Morrison, office manager for the Department of Fish and Wildlife in Vancouver.
Deep River ramp — The Recreation Conservation Office also is funding a $428,000 redevelopment of Oneida boat ramp on Deep River at Grays Bay.
Plans call for repairing the ramp and adding a loading float, toilet and parking.
The ramp is used by sturgeon fishermen in the summer plus some Buoy 10 anglers in late summer and early fall.
Warren said the Oneida ramp is not as far in the design process as Langsdorf Landing. Construction is anticipated to begin in July 2013 and be done that fall.