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Proposed south side land transfer would clear path for amphibious 'Duck boats'

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The city plans to vote an proposed riverside access point near Chinatown

A handful of proposed hotels wasn’t the other item of interest appearing on this month’s agenda for the Chicago Plan Commission. The group will also hear and vote on a measure recommending the transfer of a city-owned parcel of riverfront property near the border of East Pilsen and Chinatown to a private entity planning to operate a fleet of amphibious "Duck" Boats. The proposal would see the site utilized as an access point to the Chicago River where the hulking, diesel-powered vehicles would traverse a ramp between land and water.

A resolution recommending the disposition of City-owned parcel of land to Sea DogVentures, Inc. for access road to the South Branch of the Chicago River for use byamphibious, Commercial Recreational Vehicles ("Duck Boats") for the propertygenerally located at 2130 South Grove Street (16-076-21) 25th Ward.

Though Ducks operated in Chicago back in the 1990s, a plan to bring the amphibious vessels back to the Windy City was last discussed in early 2015 by Entertainment Cruises (operator of the aforementioned Sea Dog Ventures). While the previous plan called for the somewhat controversial construction of new concrete ramps under Marina City and near Polk Street, the newly-proposed access point on Grove Street between Cermak and Canal appears to have been offered as an alternative.