Cobourg’s Victoria Park Beach will reopen from May 31, but weekdays only
Calling it the âmost balanced responseâ amid the COVID-19 pandemic, a majority of council decided to reopen Cobourg’s famous Victoria Park Beach, but for weekdays only.
After a lengthy discussion at a special emergency council meeting held on Wednesday, May 26 to deliberate on the status of the beach this summer, in a 6-1 vote, the council decided the beach would be open from May 31, but weekdays only.
Mayor John Henderson called this “not reasonable in the right direction.”
Here are the first highlights:
A few pushed for the reopening to include weekends, but the majority canceled that option.
From May 31 – and until September 10, unless changed later – the beach will be open on weekdays and closed on weekends and holidays (including bank holiday weekends in July, August and September).
Metal fences and barriers (with emergency access points) will help the city take control measures amid COVID-19, virtual attendees heard. Signs will also be posted on the beach and staff have developed a detailed communications plan to ensure users understand provincial commands, physical distance and other requirements detailed by health authorities, he said. we explained.
The maximum occupancy of the beach is 1,200 people.
Additionally, the council authorized enforcement and the Cobourg Police Department – which will oversee enforcement – to temporarily close the beach in the event of overcrowding. In other words, if capacity is reached or if physical distance or sanitary measures are not followed, those responsible for the application will close the beach for the day.
Approval of this option resulted in costs related to closing, signage, weekly opening and closing, etc., estimated to be approximately $ 18,900 in total. The goal is to use the funds through the COVID recovery funding received.
A beach camera proposal – a proposed additional measure that would have added an additional $ 25,000, including internet costs – did not gain council support.
The live streaming beach viewing cameras would not have identified people or have archival / storage functions, but would have allowed those wishing to visit the beach to have a live preview – to see at what point it was very crowded and if the beach was at full capacity – before you left. (Similar system used at Wasaga Beach.)
It was noted on Wednesday that no money had been allocated to lifeguards in 2021 and that signage would be posted to inform bathers.
It was the second emergency council meeting in May to deliberate on the beach. Previously, the board had chosen to temporarily close the beach amid COVID-19 issues, the provincial order to stay at home and the increased use of the beach before the long weekend.
Staff should provide regular reports to the beach council (stats, trends, issues, etc.)
CAO Tracey Vaughan spoke briefly on Wednesday to the suggestion of access for local residents put forward by some residents.
âFirst and foremost, when we look at mobility rights under the charter, ensuring that individuals have the opportunity to freely access public spaces, as stated in the (staff) report, this concerns facilities such as parks, for example; and the ability of individuals, regardless of where they live, to have what they call mobility rights to be able to access public space, âsaid Vaughan. âSo this is a really important value and a dangerous area for us to look at from a human rights perspective.
âSecond, the city has really proudly embarked on a strategy of equity, diversity and inclusion, we have joined the Coalition of Inclusive Municipalities and we also believe that this is contrary to the positions we have taken and the positions That we have. taken in this trip. So, we think that both from a human rights point of view, from an EDI point of view, and also, when you come into the obligation for individuals to produce identity documents, it is a very slippery slopeâ¦ â
To view the staff report or to watch the meeting tour https://pub-cobourg.escribemeetings.com/.