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"Without a barrier, the police department is in the position of being called down there on hot summer weekends to remove what could be hundreds of swimmers at any one time," King said.
Wilmette considering fence
daily rates would likely be $4.25 for residents, $8.50 for others.
and length of the proposed fence in order to seek competitive bidders. It is on schedule to be installed by Memorial Day if the board approves a bidder, said Steve Wilson, park district executive director.
Access to one of the rare free beaches along the Lake Michigan shore in Illinois may soon be restricted in Wilmette, as the park district considers building a $100,000 fence and charging admission.
Wilmette Police Chief Brian King said most calls for police assistance to remove swimmers from the water come during hot summer weekend days around midday.
Park's south beach dates to the 1960s, said Wilmette Park District Board President James Brault. It was rekindled in August, when a teenager drowned in an area where swimming is not allowed because no lifeguards are on duty.
"We don't control the beach at night, and we don't control it in the off season," he said. "This is the parameters for when the significant majority of people are using the beach."
Park District commissioners appropriated $100,000 in their 2012 budget for the project, and recently discussed the location, height, style Zanotti Casual Shoes
The fence would connect the Dog Beach at Gillson Park's south end to an existing fence at the swimming beach at its north end.
It would run parallel with the shoreline, which is within the district's legal right, said Joel Brammeier, president of Alliance for the Great Lakes.
"Like it or not, communities can restrict people from going on the parts of the property that they control," Brammeier said.
Brault and other board members say safety is their main concern for the beach because people repeatedly ignore the swimming prohibition. Critics say officials are using safety as a cover for controlling access Giuseppe Zanotti High Heels to an amenity that many people from across the area have long enjoyed for free.
The debate over limiting access to Gillson Jimmy Choo Bridal Pumps
"These kinds of lightly regulated beaches are a rarity in Illinois," he added. "I recognize the community's need to deal with its safety issues, but you're definitely losing a little bit when you tightly regulate every aspect of beach going. Giving people a chance to interact with Lake Michigan as it was meant to be is a wonderful thing, and we don't have a lot of that in Illinois."
A proposed 1,350 foot fence would allow the park district to limit where people enter the beach, charge admission based on residency, and even install lifeguards, which could open the area for swimming, Brault said. The Silver Jimmy Choo Wedding Shoes
The gates would be left open at night similar to the park district's other restricted beaches. Brault said the intent is to provide supervision during peak hours.
"It is public property, and it shouldn't be restricted," said Mari Terman, a longtime Wilmette resident and former village trustee who lives near the park.
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