Main beach dock ends at Cultus Lake might be permanently removed

Overcrowding and COVID-19 transmission risks were the reasons for the recommended closure

Cultus Lake Park Board is looking at permanently reconfiguring part of its Main Beach dock system where young people used to congregate and party.

The widest sections of the dock jutting out into the water were fenced off by park board officials in July 2020 to control the overcrowding and COVID-19 risks.

Now they’re looking at making those changes permanent.

CAO Joe Lamb made the recommendation in his staff report prepared for the Sept. 16 meeting to have the dock altered prior to the 2021 tourist season and to reconfigure the narrower sections by adding a swim ladder.

The end of the docks have large 16-foot areas that are much wider that the other sections, with the walking area width at only about eight feet.

“This 16-foot area allows for larger groups of young adults and youth to congregate and socialize often leading to an unmanageable area that Bylaw, Security and the RCMP find great difficulty enforcing any bylaws due to the distance needed to travel to deal with drinking or undesirable behaviour,” Lamb wrote in his report.

Prior to the fencing going up at the end of the docks there was at least “one major security issue” arising each week.

The youth overcrowding and congregating behaviour has been an issue for years, but once the dock ends were closed earlier this summer there was a big improvement noted in RCMP’s ability to manage the entire Main Beach area.

”Staff is proposing to the Board to remove the 16-foot sections from each dock and reconfigure the eight-foot areas to accommodate a swim ladder,” the report continued.

Improved safety for swimmers and non-motorized pleasure craft users will be the upshot.

“It is staff’s belief, based on the parking revenue numbers for August 2020, that the primary users of these extended areas on the docks are not contributing in any significant way to the financial well-being of the Park, and in fact detract from the enjoyable use of Main Beach area for visitors.”

Park Board commissioners are scheduled to vote on the matter Wednesday, Sept. 16.

READ MORE: Dock ends closed in July

READ MORE: Boat bumped paddler

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