Petition – Bring Back Lifeguards

In the currently proposed budget for 2024, there will once again be no lifeguards on Cobourg’s main beach but Brenda and Robert Picard have started a petition to bring them back. If I recall correctly, there were three reasons they were discontinued for 2021 and 2023: 1) To save money; 2) to avoid liability problems and 3) recruiting lifeguards was getting difficult.  But Brenda says in her change-org petition: “…water safety is of paramount importance to me. The absence of lifeguards at Cobourg main beach has left many of us feeling unsafe and anxious. Our beach is a popular destination for both locals and tourists alike, and it’s crucial that we have trained professionals on hand to respond to any potential… Read complete articlePetition – Bring Back Lifeguards

Council to Decide on Boardwalk Replacement

The approved 2023 capital budget includes $810,000 for the replacement of the West Beach Boardwalk but before proceeding, the Town had an online survey asking citizens what option they wanted.  It turns out, they don’t want an elevated boardwalk and they do want the walking surface to be wood – not concrete, asphalt or a composite material.  The final preferred option was not one of the options originally suggested by staff – it would use “a composite substructure and a wood deck at the existing grade elevations”.  The basic problem is that the substructure is in contact with sand – the existing substructure is wood and after 15 years has deteriorated – the composite material would have a longer life…. Read complete articleCouncil to Decide on Boardwalk Replacement

Waterfront Parking Survey Results

At the next Committee of the Whole (CoW) meeting on 21 February, Council will receive a staff report on the latest survey about waterfront parking.  This issue goes back to 2021 when there was concern about managing crowds at the Beach.  The Parks & Recreation Advisory Committee recommended a major increase in parking fees at the waterfront with passes available to residents.  There were a number of meetings and surveys to get residents’ feedback before implementation for the 2022 season.  Then in January this year, a follow up survey was done to review the changes.  A total of 465 people responded to the online survey which mostly asked about how well the changes were understood and details about resident passes…. Read complete articleWaterfront Parking Survey Results

Right of Passage along Shoreline

One of Cobourg’s features is that we have a lake – complete with not just one, but two beaches – a large sandy groomed beach and a natural beach – the west beach.  At one end of the west Beach is a natural “park” and the other end is a creek – but oops, you can’t walk to the creek because you cross private property  – and further, that the property owner is insistent that no-one ventures onto their land or even goes into the water which they have title to.  But for those who would like to walk the full length of the West beach, the City of St. Catharines is suggesting that the provincial Government pass legislation that… Read complete articleRight of Passage along Shoreline

Harbour repairs moving ahead slowly

The 2022 budget included provision for work to start on repairing the harbour breakwaters and walls but when tenders were called for phase one, the lowest bid was “far over budget” ($7M vs a budget of $5M).  Staff then re-tendered for just part of Phase one (the East wall) but “delays of the Coast Guard building reconstruction project on the East Pier would significantly impact the east wall repair project” so at the recent Committee of the Whole council meeting, another adjustment of the sequence was recommended by staff. The new plan is to repair the West Breakwater first using the approved Phase one budget of $4.9M.   But Director Geerts said that a decision to proceed was needed now or… Read complete articleHarbour repairs moving ahead slowly

Cobourg Harbour Usage Higher in 2022

According to a report to be provided by Cobourg Community Services Staff at the Committee of the Whole meeting on Monday, both the Marina and the Campground (previously called Trailer Park) had successful years.  There is a long waiting list for seasonal slips – that seems to mean that Cobourg does not have to have a full-service Marina to be popular.  That is, we don’t need a travel lift.  Staff report that there is no desire to expand.  Both Marina and Campground split between seasonal and transient users although the Campground is gradually moving to more transients since it’s more profitable – the six remaining seasonals will be changed to transient “as they are relinquished”. The budget for the harbour… Read complete articleCobourg Harbour Usage Higher in 2022

Harbour Repair Cost Problem

As we heard over the last couple of years, Cobourg’s Harbour is in urgent need of repair – that is, the harbour walls and the breakwaters need a whole lot of work.  A consultant has done the design work and the estimated cost for Phase one of the work was put in the 2022 budget and tenders issued.  Specifically, Phase one was to rehabilitate the walls on the north and east side of the marina basin as well as the fuel dock. However, all 6 bids responding to the tender were well over the amount in the budget – the budget is $5M and the lowest bid was $7M so Staff are recommending that the tender be cancelled and that… Read complete articleHarbour Repair Cost Problem

Staff Report to Council on Additional Parking Passes

Over the past year or so, Cobourg Council and Staff have been wrestling with the issue of how to manage the popularity of Cobourg’s beach.  The solution recommended by the Parks and Recreation Advisory committee (PRAC) was a significant increase in parking fees near the beach.  Simultaneously, the parking rates for the downtown as well as the waterfront were reviewed – partly because significant Parking revenue will be needed to fund building a parking garage on Covert street to replace parking currently provided by leases of privately owned lots that will soon be developed and therefore not available for public parking.  One change is the implementation of fees for parking in Residential streets east of the beach – however, not… Read complete articleStaff Report to Council on Additional Parking Passes

Waterfront Festival is Back

The last Festival was in 2019 but the Festivals for the next two years were cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic.  Like a lot of activities that are resuming, the Festival may be less exuberant than previous Festivals because some people are still reluctant to venture out.  This includes vendors – judging by the pleas coming from the Lions for vendors, there will likely be fewer participants.  With no sales for 2 years, it’s likely that some vendors are out of business. But the Entertainment has been booked (program below), a Midway is promised, the beer tent is organized and the Rotary Tent planned. The three day event on the Canada Day long weekend is jointly run by the Lions and… Read complete articleWaterfront Festival is Back

Delegations Point to Parking By-Law problems

The new Parking By-Law is already causing problems for residents of the “East Beach Waterfront Area” – they are now in an area where parking is paid for in the beach season albeit with special arrangements for residents.  At the May 30 Committee of the whole Council meeting, there were two (related) delegations asking for exceptions. The problem that Caryn and David MacDiarmid have is that they are expecting “50-60 people in our backyard for our daughter Leigha’s graduation with her University Master’s degree” on June 4.  That means about 20 cars will need parking nearby.  If the event were after 4:00 pm it would not be a problem since restrictions end at 4:00 – but the event is at… Read complete articleDelegations Point to Parking By-Law problems