City council has authorized closing vehicle lake access at Dutch Point Road.
Citing safety as the main reason for the move, staff will pursue establishing three to five parking spaces on the road in the 2015 budget process, and work to increase access at the Scout Island boat launch.
According to the city, Dutch Point Road is not a dedicated road right-of-way; it is an encroachment onto CN Rail right-of-way and is only 10 metres in width, which is half of most city roads,
There were many incidents when residents were not able to adequately drive to their homes and it became an issue for emergency or municipal services vehicles such as fire trucks or snow plows to travel the road when vehicles were parked there, Mayor Kerry Cook said.
“We also put forward improvements to Scout Island,” Cook said, adding the closure is not one piece in isolation, but part of a larger effort to improve lake access.
All of council expect Coun. Surinderpal Rathor voted in favour of the closure. Coun. Sue Zacharias was absent from the meeting.
Rathor said he was in favour of supporting the closure and protecting the rights of the residents on Dutch Point Road, but that the boat access should not be closed until after a plan is found for better access to the lake.
Cook said access is being limited to vehicles only.
Outgoing Coun. Geoff Bourdon said the issue has been at the council table for a while.
“I agree we need a secondary access and it will be a challenge for the future council.”