Ferry Site could be Maritime Hub
Written by Rob Levin Friday, June 08, 2012 at 2:17 pm
BAR HARBOR — Potential new uses for the idle international ferry terminal on Eden Street, including a combination cruise ship pier and public marina, were illustrated in detail May 31 at a workshop held by the professional consultants hired to study the property.
Nearly 70 people turned out for the meeting. Luis Ajamil, president of Bermello Ajamil & Partners, began with a presentation of the situation, dating from the first Bluenose ferry from Nova Scotia in 1955 through the end of the high-speed service aboard the Cat in 2010. High-resolution images of what the property could look like under what B&A says would be a sustainable business model covered the walls of much of the upstairs of the municipal building.
Within that vision, a quarter-mile cruise ship pier shares space with a public marina. Cruise passenger tour buses have their own lot in which to maneuver, and more than 100 town parking spaces are included with a band shell available for concerts, among other things.
“The end result in this…is that this is a viable business model,” Mr. Ajamil said. Docking would be retained should a ferry return, he said. But a ferry would never bring in enough money as a standalone venture, once the investment is made to bring the property back to good condition.
“If you had the best year, it would still be a money loser in the range of millions of dollars,” Mr. Ajamil said of a ferry. “It has to be part of something else that generates money.”