The RDCK is taking steps to protect public use of Five Mile beach after a proposed dock raised the issue to public outcry.

UPDATED: RDCK moves to protect Nelson’s north shore beaches

Regional government is taking the first steps in protecting two popular beaches along Nelson’s north shore.

Regional government is taking the first steps in protecting two popular beaches along Nelson’s north shore.

RDCK director Ron Mickel is spearheading safeguarding of Five-Mile and Six-Mile beaches along Highway 3A for public use.

Locals have been concerned about access to the Five-Mile beach after a Calgary couple that has a summer home in the area submitted an application for private moorage in early 2013.

Plans for the proposed dock appeared to have the structure cutting across crown land and one of the last remaining public beaches on the North Shore. Even after homeowners revised their plan last fall, people remained strong in opposing any development.

Five-Mile beach, also referred to as Willow Point, features a curved sandbar extending into Kootenay Lake. Within that curve exists a natural wading pool and swimming area for children making the beach popular with families.

“The dock issue brought this to the forefront,” said Mickel. “It was never considered a priority. The access was there. The beach was there for everyone to enjoy so the RDCK never felt the pressure to take responsibility for it.”

Now, the Parks Commission has agreed to pursue protection. The matter is slated for the next regional board meeting and Mickel is confident the ball will continue to roll.

Application for public access will be filed with the Ministry of Transportation who would grant protection of the foreshore.

Area resident Eva Myers McKimm is pleased to see movement toward protecting a beach that so many cherish.

As long term residents we are relieved that the community beach will officially become protected for public use,” she said. “This has been a polarized issue in our neighbourhood for a couple of years, and we are very pleased that the RDCK is stepping in to maintain what we consider to be the status quo for beach users.”

Mickel has been an advocate of protecting lands for public use since being elected.

“I think it’s important to preserve those special places. History has identified, just by the number of people who use it, that obviously it’s very important to the community,” he said.

There are some other areas Mickel feels in need of protection.

“But I think that would be biting off to much for the board so I will go for these two and hopefully get them first,” he said.

At the time of publication, property owners proposing the dock at Five-Mile Jane and Mark Andreychuck hadn’t returned calls from the Star for comment.

Just Posted

Nelson considers amnesty on parking fines

Drivers with backlogged fines would have until January to apply

EDITORIAL: Federal NDP challenges evident on Kootenay campaign trip

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh tours the Kootenays in support of local MPs, proportional representation

Playmore Junction Big Band to perform at SD8 schools

Concerts will be held at W.E. Graham, Trafalgar and J.V. Humphries

Columbia Basin Trust announces grant for technology upgrades

The deadline for organizations to apply is Dec. 17

Leafs fall to Braves, Twitter fight breaks out

Nelson gave up two goals in the third en route to a 4-2 loss

VIDEO: E. coli outbreak linked to romaine lettuce sickens 18 people in Ontario, Quebec

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency says it’s working with U.S. authorities to determine the source of the romaine lettuce those who got ill were exposed to.

Feds give formal notice for law to end Canada Post strike

Trudeau government ready to legislate employees back to work after five weeks of rotating strikes

Lower Mainland suspect identified in fatal northern B.C. hit and run

Suspect and seven other individuals believed involved located on Haida Gwaii

‘Bait and switch’ warning ahead of Black Friday and Cyber Monday

Competition Bureau of Canada is warning shoppers of illegal sale tactics

Legal battle ahead for suspended B.C. legislature executives

Public removal ‘very unfair,’ says veteran clerk Craig James

B.C. sees biggest spike in homicides across Canada, at 34%

Much of the killing was attributed to gang violence, according to Statistics Canada

Sea lion tangled in rope on Vancouver Island

Marine debris is a ‘significant problem’ for marine wildlife

Postal strike affects charities at critical fundraising time

Canadian fundraising professionals and charities join call for fast resolution

$90,000 pen from space created by B.C man

The Space pen is made from a meteorite

Most Read