Riverwalk Marina expanding

Riverwalk Marina expanding

Following a dream is nothing new for most us, but in Decatur, there is a man who has a vision for what used the be called, the Decatur Boat Harbor.

Now called the Riverwalk Marina, he is working hard at expanding it.

They are undergoing some changes now, and hope to have more changes soon.

"We've been in an expansion the last two years trying to get Riverwalk Marina where it should have been 30 years ago," says Steve Conner.

Conner is hopeful that recreation will replace industry as a focal point for the river.

He has 40 years remaining on a lease, but he hopes his dreams come true much sooner than that.

"Right now the biggest expansion we've got is we're putting in all new transient slips, docks and more transient slips inside the marina," says Conner.

That will give boaters a place to stay the night.

"This one we can house 12 boats on the outside here along with 60 and 80 foot slips down the gas dock, and on the inside we can handle the 40 and 50 foot boats," says Conner.

Walk a few steps with Conner and you begin to visualize his dream.

"The vision now is to become more recreational and put a reception hall that can handle about 400 people," says Conner.

He foresees a swimming pool, weight room and more on the west end.

In another area, he would also like a dry storage facility, but the city must first give permission.

"With the Hard Dock, our expansion would have to be up. We really can't go out any. So on top of the roof area here build another deck," says Conner.

The growth would be $300,000 to $400,000 and can not happen all at the same time, but if luck is with the tides, Conner hopes for smooth sailing.

He says he would like to have everything done in about 2 years, but realistically, it's more like 5.