Mushroom Beach is now officially an off-leash dog beach

New dog beach unleashed

It didn't take long for city council to get on the dog beach gravy train.

Council unanimously approved making the Lake Avenue Beach Access, commonly known as Mushroom Beach, a permanent off-leash dog beach.

The move came after what staff called a successful two-year trial.

"I am glad to see it was such a wonderful success. And, I'm not surprised," said Coun. Charlie Hodge, a vocal proponent of the addition of more dog beaches and parks.

"I'm sad to see my dog didn't live long enough to see this day, but thank you for allowing citizens a place to take their dog."

The outcome of the trial did surprise a few on council. Councillors Maxine DeHart and Luke Stack said they were both skeptical when the trial was first recommended.

Coun. Stack said the trial turned out much better than he expected.

Coun. DeHart acknowledged there were a few negative comments, but added there will always be some.

Park planner Melanie Steppuhn said a majority of those surveyed were in favour of the dog beach, but did suggest better signage, fencing and more doggie bag dispensers.

Steppuhn did indicate there is budget for the additions.

As for fencing, she did indicate the city can only fence on three sides, since it is not able to fence into the water.

"Additional fencing can be put toward the Lake Avenue side, which will help dogs when people exiting their vehicle or taking them onto the site," said Steppuhn.

"It will help give separation between those dogs on the beach and pedestrians and cyclists coming along Lake Avenue."

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