Re: June 14th letter by Dean Watkiss I concur with everything that Mr. Watkiss included in his wonderful letter. I first became attached to Sylvan Lake in 1958, and have looked forward to spending as many summer hours here as a guest and subsequent summer resident.
However this is no longer the case. Without still having a strong attachment to the Sylvan Lake Golf & Country Club, I would not spend any of my summer here. Our family, including young grandchildren, do not want to come here anymore. They are not interested in continuing the use of our summer residence due to the current and probably continued stated of the former fabulous beach at Sylvan Lake.
My immediate concerns evolved from the suggestion that a retaining wall is to be constructed along Lakeshore Drive from 34th to 39th streets. To what purpose? There is already a natural retaining wall in Lakeshore Drive itself that will protect the permanent and summer residences located south of the drive. Please do not disturb further what remains of the natural beach front.
Secondly the placement of the dam of jagged rocks at drive access points to the lake, presumably to minimize erosion, has basically shut down use of this area. Did not whomever was responsible for this project realize that as well as holding back eroding waters, it would eliminate people access to the lake.
Natural evaporation was the expert answer to control the unusually high Sylvan Lake water level. This is undoubtedly the highest this lake has been since I first observed it in ’58.
Evaporation is taking place. This evaporation is the economic benefits to the town through loss of tourism and summer residency.
For God’s sake!, doesn’t someone in municipal or provincial government realize the extent of the emergency you face, and without immediate action to lower the lake level, the disaster that will become Sylvan Lake will come to pass.
Left at the current level, with continued inflow with no outflow of water, the lake will be at least six inches higher and extensive flooding will be the problem next year. This is not an “expert” opinion, but one developed by a longtime observer of the nature of things.
In the past, I could not wait upon arrival at the lake to walk down to the 37th Street beach and think “beautiful”. Now, I walk and slide down to the beach off 37th St. and think “ugly”.