By Emily Goldberg

Florida Southern College is building a new boat dock that will serve as a helpful tool for students and faculty who utilize Lake Hollingsworth.

Terry Dennis, Vice President of Finance and Administration for the college, explained that the two existing boat docks that are on Lake Hollingsworth are used mostly by the water ski team. The two boats that the college owns have suffered a great deal of wear and tear from the weather due to the docks being uncovered.

“Three years ago, the college purchased a pontoon boat that’s mainly used for our science programs. If they want to take students out on the lake to look at plant growth or something of that nature, they’ll have that to use,” Dennis said.

Dennis said that friends of the college whose children were on the water ski team approached him about a more protected boat dock. The college had received some support from alumni about possible funding, which made them more serious about the project.

Once Dennis and the college knew they could get the proper funding, he began to start the design process. Because the lake is a protected waterway, shoreline protection falls under the state: not only did he have to complete regular city permits, but he had to make applications through the state for the waterway because the dock would affect the shoreline.

Just as Dennis was finishing up the permitting of the project, he ran into a snag. The state updated their fire code laws.

“The new regulations required that if you have an area of a certain square footage that’s under a roof, you are required to have a sprinkler system.”

This pushed the project back more, because they now have to include a water system before they can start building. The blocked-off section that we see now around Lake Hollingsworth is where they have to run the water lines under the sidewalk.

The construction on the sprinkler system has an estimated completion date set for early next week. Construction workers will then start the building of the dock itself.

“The dock will extend farther out into the lake than the existing one,” Dennis said. “You’ll walk down about halfway through the walking part of the dock and to the right, there will be a rectangular area for people to watch the ski team or for the team to sit and take a break.

“Towards the other end, there’re attachments where we can put kayaks and canoes and a ramp that can push the canoe into the water. Then there is the big rectangular piece that will have a cover over it with boatlifts that can help pull the boats out of the water. It will make the boats better protected.”

Dennis said that the dock would serve for regular intramural usage for students; it will also help the water ski team and the science programs that plan to use the pontoon boat.

The estimated time of completion is set for around six weeks from now, but this is still dependent upon completion of the water system and when the construction will actually begin.


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