New Marina At Rowena takes another step closer to reality

Posted February 15, 2017 at 10:05 am

A proposed new marina on Lake Cumberland that has been on the table and off the table several times in the last half-decade, is back in the news again.


This figure depicts the features and improvements that are proposed in the “beyond five year” stage of the planned Marina At Rowena, including a strip of boat mooring strips visible in the upper-center area. The blue star in the bottom right is the approximate location where Hwy. 558 sits at the Clinton County - Russell County boundary. Most of the improvements are actually located in Russell County.

The latest announcement from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is the strongest indication yet that not only is the project back “on” the table again, but perhaps even on a fast-track schedule to becoming a reality.

In a Public Notice received by the Clinton County News last week and titled as a “Joint Public Notice” between the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Commonwealth of Kentucky, details were laid out about the proposed new facility.

That public notice was to give notice that the applicant for the proposed project was Marina at Rowena, LLC, with an address of 5528 Grider Hill Dock Road, Albany.

Rowena Landing South, as the new marina would be known, would be located at the end of Ky. 558 where the road ends in Lake Cumberland.

Although that exact point where the highway meets Lake Cumberland is actually located in neighboring Russell County, the only way to access the location by land is by driving through Clinton County on Hwy. 558.

Currently, Rowena Landing on the south side, is about one-half mile past the Clinton County boundary, into neighboring Russell County.

Preseently, the area is little more than a widened portion of the highway where small boats can be launched and local residents are known to gather during the summer months to swim.

The proposed marina is described as a full service commercial marina. The submitted plans call for the faclity to be completed within a phased five year plan.

The location where the marina facility would be located, including the main dock and boat mooring slips, would be in an area of Lake Cumberland that is also located in Russell County.

According to the information supplied by the Corps of Engineers last week, the new facility would extend from a new launching ramp and parking lot, toward the main body of Lake Cumberland and would include a walkway along a long strip of boat mooring slips.

The plan submitted to the Corps of Engineers by Rowena Landing South, would call for that initial mooring facility to include some 135 boat slips, 56 of which would be used to moor houseboats with the reamining 79 designed to house smaller boats and vessels.

At the end of the collection of mooring slips, some 1,441 feet from it’s beginning walkway, would be a floating dock that would include a marina store, restaurant and fueling station

Beyond the floating dock would be an additional 200 feet of walkway leading to a wave break structure as well as a collection of additional mooring slips that would be used as temporary or transient slips for traffic coming off of the lake to visit the store or restaurant.

According to the plan released last week, the mooring slips and marina dock store and restaurant would be completed at the end of the second year of the five-year phased construction.

Eventually, the plan calls for the construction of a host of other possible facilities that would serve the tourism trade visiting the marina.

Among those plans include picnic areas, walking and biking trails, sites for both seasonal and transient recreational v-ehicle parks and even proposed lodging facilities that would offer overnight lodging with a view of Lake Cumberland.

The project would begin with the construction of a large parking lot and new boat launching ramp that would be scheduled to be completed at the end of the first year after construction gets underway.

That new parking lot and launching ramp would involve the removal of material from adjacent hillsides and mounds, and using that material for fill in order to achieve the new launching ramp and parking lots.

Last week’s notice notes that the applicant, Rowena Landing South, LLC, had already provided a market analysis and feasibility study that indicted potential future demand for marine recreational activiteis on Lake Cumberlaned would eventually increase to a point whereby supply of slips must be increased in order to meet those projected demands.

In addition, the notice explained that additional studies that would be completed before the lease was granted, would involve reviews of historical and cultural impacts as well as impacts to water and endangered and or threatened species.

No time frame for the completion of those studies was given.

The notice did point out that additional permits as required by state, federal and local agencies must be furnished before the application would be approved.

As for public comment, the notice stated that any person may “request, in writing, within the comment period specified in this notice, that a public hearing be held to consider this application. Requests for public hearings shall state, with particularity, the reasons for holding a hearing.”

The deadline for those written statements to be received by the Corps of Engineers, is March 4, 2017.

Those statements should be directed to Regulatory Division, Attention: John Price, Nashville District Corps of Engineers, Regulatory Division, East Regulatory Field Office (Attn: John Price), 501 Adesa Parkway, Suite 250, Lenoir City, TN 37771 or at

The proposed new marina has been an on again, off again project for several years now.

The Corps of Engineers first announced publicly in 2010 that it was considering the area near Rowena Landing for a new site for a commercial marina on Lake Cumberland.

In January, 2012, the agency announced it was ready to accept applications for the leasing of the area and construction of a new facility.

Then in January, 2014, almost two years to the day from it’s aforementioned announcement, the agency sent out a press release that noted the Nashville District had withdrawn it’s Notice of Availability for the project.

In May, 2015, the agency again announced that it was ready to once again begin the process of accepting applications for the new project.

With that announcement, the project’s size was greatly increased, with the COE noting that the project would be nearly twice as big as originally planned, involving up to 353 acres of land and 54 acres of water for a total size of over 400 acres.