We are a group of Township residents that support the creation of a Boathouse on Township land on the non-residential end of River Road in Penn Valley. The Boathouse would help to carry on the long-standing tradition of the two public high schools: Lower Merion High School and Harriton High School rowers (since 1945) on the Schuylkill River as well as provide a location, on our over 7 miles of Township waterfront, for water safety and community access. We invite you to read in detail our FAQ and join us in supporting the building of this much-needed resource.
For more information please contact us at: LMCBoathouse@gmail.com
Join our mailing list
Sign the petition: Let’s Build a Community Boathouse
1.14.17 We have been working hard behind the scenes receiving support from the School District, creating a newly formed 501 (c)3, The Lower Merion Scholastic Rowing Association, and petitioning the Lower Merion Board of Commissioners to place the Boathouse on to an upcoming meeting agenda. Here is the transcript of the Public Privilege request we made at the December 2016 Board of Commissioners meeting:
“Thank you for giving me the opportunity to address you tonight. I am representing a group of concerned citizens and students that wish to self-finance, build and operate a Lower Merion Community Boathouse along the banks of the Schuylkill River in Flat Rock Park. The purpose of the boathouse is to provide a safe environment for our Lower Merion High School Rowing Programs, both Lower Merion High School and Harriton High School, and a recreational facility for all Lower Merion Township residents in a financially self-contained program.
Our crews have had rowing as a part of their storied athletic history since 1945, even before Harriton High School was first built–one of the oldest public high school rowing programs in the country. Over the years Lower Merion and Harriton have won National Championships and have competed at the international level. We have approximately 140 students each year participate in the sport between the 2 high schools – one of our major high school sports. The crews are inclusive and have a number of students with disabilities and low-income participating each year.
Currently, the District must lease space for the storage of equipment and dockage in Conshohocken, at some distance across the river, where our teams must fight for space among the crowded conditions shared with fifteen other organizations. Harriton Crew will soon lose access to their storage location when their building is demolished for coming new development. Due to the scarcity of rowing facilities in our area, Lower Merion Crew has faced annual rent increases, this year going up by $8000. Currently, we are spending upwards of $50,000/year just in annual leasing fees.
We have established a Section 501 (c) (3) organization, The Lower Merion Scholastic Rowing Association, approved by the IRS, for the purpose of building and maintaining a boat house and also have the enthusiastic support of the School District for this project. We have a fundraising plan and company to help raise the needed funds. The boathouse will be built with private contributions with no new costs to the Township or the School District and as such It is truly a win-win situation for Lower Merion.
We respectfully ask you to please place the issue of the feasibility of building a boathouse in Flat Rock Park, on your upcoming agenda. Thank you.”