New shoreline management plan proposed

By Michael Isom

Staff writer, The Hartwell Sun, April 18, 2019

Waterfront property owners on Lake Hartwell may need to have more land along the shoreline than previously required to nstall a new dock if a new shoreline management plan from the Army Corps of Engineers s approved as is.

The plan also suggests changes for rules on where vessels or other floating structures can be moored, rules for jump gates on docks, where lakeside walkways can go and how solar panels and lighting are used on docks, among other things.

The Corps released the proposed plan Monday. It is the first time the management plan has been updated since 2007, according to the release.

The Corps is seeking public comment on the plan through May 15.

Under the 2007 plan, property owners along the lake needed at least 20 feet of lakefront land to be permitted for a dock. The new plan extends that to require
75 feet for a new dock, according to a chart comparing changes in the two plans.

(See correction at bottom).

Properties in a limited development area along the lake already needed a minimum of 75 feet for what the Corps calls improved walkways or for utility rights of way. Those improved walkways, essentially paths along the lakefront, previously did not require a
dock to be permitted.

Under the new plan, “rights of way and improved walkways are considered supporting
facilities for a dock, therefore one can only be permitted if a dock is authorized,” the comparison chart said. Properties with less than 75 feet bordering a limited development area would still be considered for rights of way or walkways if a dock is already present, according to the plan.

The plan would also prohibit jump gates on the second level or roofs of docks and limit floating structures like inflatables or trampolines from impeding ingress, egress and navigation.

Not everything would be more restrictive in the plan, however. It would also allow for security cameras to be installed on docks, for solar panels to be used for electrical services on docks and for solar lighting to be installed along improved walkways
under certain conditions.

The 47-page draft plan and comment forms are available

Comments can be submitted via email to or
by mail to the address on the comment form.

**Correction 4/25/19

An article published on page 1A on April 18 incorrectly stated that the U.S. Army

Corps of Engineers previously allowed docks with only 20 feet of water frontage.

The corps previously required 75 feet of dock and is proposing in a new plan

that 75 feet be required for all permitted facilities and activities.