Nova Scotia

Councillor wants HRM to consider reopening some boat launches

A Halifax councillor wants the municipality to consider reopening some boat launches. Most are closed due to the pandemic because they are considered municipal parkland.

'People have been calling. They are eager to get to their camps by the … VIctoria Day long weekend'

HRM Coun. David Hendsbee wants the municipality to consider opening some of its boat launches. (Paul Palmeter/CBC)

Update: Coun. David Hendsbee withdrew his request Tuesday after it became clear the proposal did not have support from most of his council colleagues.

A Halifax councillor wants the municipality to consider reopening some boat launches.

Most are closed due to the pandemic because they are considered municipal parkland. But Coun. David Hendsbee said there are about 200 cabins and cottages on Lake Charlotte that are only accessible by water.

"People have been calling," said Hendsbee. "They are eager to get to their camps by the … Victoria Day long weekend."

Dr. Robert Strang, Nova Scotia's chief medical officer of health, has advised against travelling to open up cottages. At a briefing earlier this month, Strang said "the more movement of people we have around Nova Scotia … creates a substantive increased risk for all of us."

But, according to Hendbsee, many people who own camps along the Eastern Shore live in the area. He thinks certain boat launches could be opened safely.

"The Lake Charlotte boat launch has quite a large parking lot, so social distancing won't be a problem," he said. "I think we need to look at them on a case-by-case scenario."

Hendsbee said there are cottages on islands off the Eastern Shore and in the Herring Cove area that also require the use of boat launches.

The issue will be raised at a Halifax regional council meeting on Tuesday.

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