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The Buffalo State College Great Lakes Center field station’s boat launch and dock is getting a $150,000 upgrade to improve the center’s research and study capabilities on the lakes.

An announcement by State Sen. Mark Grisanti, R-Buffalo, and SUNY Buffalo State President Katherine Conway-Turner is expected at 11 a.m. today.

“Lake Erie has always been vital to Buffalo’s economic success,” said Grisanti. “Contributing to the scientific knowledge necessary for protecting Lake Erie is essential to safeguarding our region’s most valuable asset.”

The center’s dock and launch is at its field station along the Niagara River off Porter Avenue between the Buffalo Yacht Club and the Frank Lloyd Wright Fontana Boathouse.

Grisanti said the center employs a fleet of vessels that rely on the ramp for access to research sites, and when the water level of Lake Erie is low – as it has been in recent years – the ramp is too shallow for an effective launch of three of its larger research vessels.