Plans to Improve Canals in Fort Lauderdale

Fort Lauderdale draws in millions of dollars of revenue each year from the superyacht industry. The marine industry in the area creates jobs, brings the annual boat show each October, increases tourism dollars and boosts demand for property keeping up values in the region.

Now Fort Lauderdale city officials are looking into the dredging of the New River, the main line of access to yachting facilities in the city. The improvements are designed to make the city competitive with international ports in the Caribbean, Mediterranean and Dubai.

The city has commissioned the Florida Inland Navigation District, a state agency that keeps the Intracoastal Waterway navigable, to determine if it would be possible to deepen a 6-mile stretch of river. The waterway averages 10 feet deep would be dredged to 14 feet, making it possible for newer boats with jet drives and larger yachts and sailboats up to 200 feet long to come through.

The project is still being studied to examine how it would affect the surrounding environment. It is estimated to cost around $16 million, but the process would take two years before any dredging occurs.