The Rehabilitated Birches Boat Ramp at Pymatuning Lake State Park
Pymatuning Lake State Park in Ohio is a popular vacation destination, managed by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR). Well known for its superb outdoor opportunities, the 14,000-acre reservoir offers multiple boat access areas, seasonal docks, and some of the finest walleye and muskie fishing in Ohio.
ODNR hired KS Associates to assess four boat ramps at the park: Birches Ramp, Cabin Ramp, New Bowers Ramp, and Campground Ramp. KS Associates performed a structural assessment, topographic surveys, and bathymetric surveys at each location. Engineers discovered that the Birches Ramp had experienced the most deterioration and was given priority for structural repairs. KS also found that the bulkheads adjacent to the four boat ramps were beginning to fail, including those at the New Bowers Ramp.
KS Associates provided engineering services to repair the Birches and New Bowers ramps, including removal of the concrete bulkheads, replacement of the ramps with concrete abutments, and stabilizing the shoreline adjacent to the ramps with new stone rip-rap. The project also included installation of new boarding docks and fishing stations.
KS Coastal Engineers oversaw the geotechnical subsurface investigation, which included deploying a drill rig and crew to advance two test borings. Geotechnical field work was completed within two weeks from authorization, which allowed design to stay on schedule.
The rehabilitated boat ramps were constructed in time for the busy fishing and boating seasons. The Birches Boat Ramp was operational in time for Memorial Day, May 20, 2022, and the New Bowers Ramp was operational in June 2023, in time for the Independence Day holiday.