Vidalia waterfront changes underway, marina planned

Published 12:00 am Saturday, August 19, 2006

VIDALIA &8212; Efforts to give the Vidalia Riverfront an edge through new construction are underway.

Plans to construct a boat ramp followed by a marina exist and are ongoing projects, Vidalia Marketing Director Glen McGlothin said. The marina, hoping to offer a better landing to boats up to 25 feet long, is scheduled to begin upon completion of ramp improvements, Vidalia Mayor Hyram Copeland said.

The city has received a $425,000 grant to begin boat ramp improvements.

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&8220;Basically this money will be to improve the ramp we have now so it can accommodate bigger boats,&8221; Copeland said.

The core of engineers is currently doing surveying work on the ramp, which is in the &8220;first phase&8221; of the project, McGlothin said.

Plans for the improvement of the ramp include lighting and repairing and widening the ramp. The project is in its first phase and will be followed by the second phase, construction of a marina, Copeland said.

Another construction under way on the Riverfront is the $10 million dollar Promise Specialty Hospital of Vidalia facility.

Promise Healthcare Inc., which owns and operates the Promise Specialty Hospital of the Miss-Lou in Ferriday, is building the facility on the riverfront.

The Ferriday hospital is a 40-bed facility specializing in long-term acute care &8212; patients who need lengthy hospital recuperation after catastrophic illness of severe injury. The hospital also provides a variety of other services.

The Vidalia facility will employ 120 to 150 employees and help growth in the area, Copeland said.

&8220;When people come to Vidalia and commit to $10 million projects, it speaks for the area,&8221; McGlothin said.