For decades, Cobourg’s waterfront stored massive, towering piles of coal, waiting to be loaded on to ships bound for the American steel factories. Once those factories modernized, the piles disappeared. Yet, up until the late 1980s, it was still an industrial area, as huge oil tanks storing fuel. It is hard to imagine today what it looked like before when viewing the residential development, parks, marina, campground, and historic beach, that has attracted people since the 19th century. For many, the waterfront is the gem of the town.
To merely mention any changes to Cobourg’s waterfront these days and you will be guaranteed to get an earful. Regardless of a person’s position – upgrade, expand, leave it alone, preserve it – know that it will be a passionate, intense defense.
Two weeks ago, Cobourg council debated the future of the East Pier and the Campgrounds, as they tried to move forward in an effort to meet one of their stated strategic objectives: to get the East Pier fixed after being closed to vehicular traffic since February 2018. For some, that is a long time. And there are politicians who are feeling the pressure to get it done in short order, while others are seeking to steer the process in another direction to ensure public gets a voice in the decisions before anything goes forward. The result could be delays in completing the project in the near future.
Cobourg Councillor Emily Chorley, the coordinator of Parks and Recreation, provides details around these plans and the costs. She gives her rationale for seeking public input into the future of the East Pier, as well as explaining why she chose to modify the staff’s recommendations for how the council should proceed. All this and the costs associated with the various options. For in-depth information, please listen.