Cold Lake City Council heard a delegation from a resident of the City, Patrick Hort proposing the City makes a proper walking trail from Horseshoe Bay Estates to the beach. Hort cited private property owners’ structures encroaching on beach land and hindering walkers ability to get to the beach as a main need for a proper walking trail. Mayor of Cold Lake, Craig Copeland, says in theory the City would love walking trails connecting the entire community; however it’s just not a priority at this time and there are other trails that are in line to be made first.
“Mr Hort did a great presentation, he’s asking for one or two walking trails to the lake,” Mayor Copeland explains, “so people who don’t have lakefront properties can walk down to the lake and access the lake.” it really comes down to money, explains Mayor Copeland, “we don’t have the financial wherewithal’s to even begin to look at making a walking trail from Horseshoe Bay all the way to Kinosoo Beach. That would be a very expensive undertaking. We have other trails that we want to do in Cold Lake, in residential areas, that would be a higher priority, in my opinion, but that’ll have to be brought to Council.”
Some of the trails the City is considering include, “walking and biking trails in Brady Heights in Cold Lake South, English Bay road, Creekside, and other developments. There’s so many different neighbourhoods that have been requesting a trail network that Council, if we had money to do this, would probably focus on within the City before we would tackle such a big project from Horseshoe Bay all the way to Kinosoo.”
“Sure it would look nice, but you;re talking a huge expenditure, when we don’t even have $100,000 to start a small walking trail in a neighbourhood,” Mayor Copeland says the presentation was well-done and well-received; however the funding just isn’t there at this time.
The trail discussion grew into a bigger topic, explains the mayor, “he talked about lakeshore from Horseshoe Bay and all the way to Kinosoo Beach and all the boat houses and docks that are encroaching on public lands. Instead of these structures being on private land, they’re stretching onto public land.”
Like most lakes, there’s a buffer zone between private property and public land on beaches; so even if a person has beachfront property, often they do not own the land immediately in front of the water. The City has Bylaws to ensure there are not structures build or encroaching on public land; however it can be hard to enforce and this isn’t the first time this issue has been brought to Council, explains Mayor Copeland. “We’ve had that in front of us a few times and we’re fully aware that there’s boat launches, lifts, and boat houses that over time have been built on the shorelines of Cold Lake. We’re talking about properties that are over 50-60 years in the making.”
“The issue really is, is it a burning issue of Council’s to go in there and tell everybody they have to move their structures. That will have to be debated, but I don’t see it being a problem; right now.”