Barrie council expected to settle future of Wilkins Beach Monday

On Monday night, Barrie city council will decide what to do with Wilkins Beach.

The beach is known as a small and quiet piece of land next to Lake Simcoe. After consistently seeing large crowds from near and far last summer, councillors are expected to approve a motion to de-list the beach and change its name to Wilkins Park.

The move is meant to deter out-of-town visitors and would include wiping Wilkins Beach from the city map, website, and social media channels.

After the beach was heavily damaged by a storm last summer, council is also expected to vote on closing off access altogether for necessary restoration efforts to occur.

Local councillor Mike McCann wants to find another way.

"City staff have proposed that about 75 percent to 80 percent of the beach would be closed for restoration and protection," McCann said Sunday. "My suggestion would be that 80 percent of the beach would be open, and just the parts that are needed to be preserved would be protected."

It is a top-of-mind issue for nearby residents, looking for a solution that does not prevent them from visiting the spot.

"We're hoping for a better remedy than taking away the sand and the beach for our little guys because it's a great spot," said John Pridham.

McCann would also like to see a pilot project to allow residents to request an overnight parking pass for a night, so their guests can have a place to park without getting towed.Barrie council expected to settle future of Wilkins Beach Monday