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Further study needed for boat launch

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Oshawa waterfront

By Joel Wittnebel/The Oshawa Express

Oshawa council has ordered further study to be completed around the potential for a public boat launch at the Oshawa harbour, however, local boaters will have some time to wait before dropping a boat in Lake Ontario.

Following approval from council on June 25, city staff will now be investigating the potential for an Oshawa boat launch, including a $25,000 hydrographic study of the marina area in order to determine whether dredging needs to be completed.

The move comes 16 years after the Oshawa marina was closed and is one of the first concrete steps council has taken toward constructing a new boat launch. The move also comes after the marine lands officially opened for public use as part of the city’s Canada Day celebrations.

At a recent meeting of the city’s Development Services committee, Paul Ralph, the city’s commissioner of development services, noted that council had previously never given direction for staff to move forward with putting serious resources toward constructing a boat launch ramp as part of the rejuvenation of the Oshawa Harbour Lands.

“Even today, newcomers who have moved to Oshawa are shocked and surprised that there is nowhere within the city limits of Oshawa, that if you have a recreational boat, you can access to or from Lake Ontario. How shameful,” said Larry Ladd, a vocal waterfront activist.

As it stands, staff are directed to bring a further report back to council, including potential locations for a boat launch, design options and a recommendations for a public process, in 2019.