Mayor Supports Plan to Advance Funding for Sandpoint Beach

Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens and Ward 7 Councillor Jeewen Gill today announced their intention to seek Council authorization to advance funding for Sandpoint Beach that would begin an environmental assessment (EA) process three years earlier than originally planned.

See video of the media conference announcing funding plans (YouTube).

The City of Windsor’s capital plan sets aside $227,500 in 2024 to begin the environmental assessment process to relocate the beach area further east along the waterfront.

Councillor Gill, with the support of Mayor Dilkens, will be presenting a motion at the next meeting of City Council to advance this funding immediately and begin the EA this year.

The Environmental Assessment is the first step required to ultimately relocate the public access beach further east, which would increase the distance between an approved swimming area and the out-of-bounds area marked off near a deep drop-off.

Sandpoint Beach was acquired in 1976 and established as a beach in 1980. The beach consists of approximately 488 metres of beachfront and 2.6 acres of parkland.

The beach has a designated swimming area that is installed in early June and removed in September. The swimming area is marked by a double buoy line system, and lifeguards are on duty 1:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. daily beginning in June and running through Labour Day weekend, weather and water quality permitting.

In 2012, the Lifesaving Society completed a comprehensive aquatic safety audit of Sandpoint Beach. While this study did not find any problems that warranted priority concern status, 17 overall recommendations were provided to Council. Since 2013, the City of Windsor has moved forward and implemented all 17 recommendations included in this report.

Over the past ten years, the City of Windsor has invested in Sandpoint Beach safety through additional fencing, enhanced signage, the relocation of volleyball posts, and rebuilt lifeguard towers.

Quotes:

“I’ve heard from my constituents that they support relocating Sandpoint Beach to further enhance public safety. For months, I have been working with the Mayor and administration to deliver, and next week, I’m asking my Council colleagues to support my motion to advance the funding for the Sandpoint Beach Environmental Assessment.” - Ward 7 Councillor Jeewen Gill.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has reinforced that community spaces – parks, trails, playgrounds, golf courses and beaches – are places where residents are going for enjoyment. These are amenities that City Council and administration take seriously, and we are focused on improving the quality of our public spaces. Councillor Gill’s motion responds to resident needs, and I’m proud to endorse his advocacy.” - Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens.

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