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Foster Avenue Dog Beach Overtaken By Rising Lake Levels

Dog-Beach-1Dog owners in Edgewater have likely noticed a shrinking amount of beach space for their dogs to run around, swim and play off leash at Foster Beach, 5200 N. Lake Shore Drive. The Edgeville Buzz also noticed that the staircase at Foster Beach has been dislocated. 

“Due to the increase in the water levels of Lake Michigan, the whole (beach) area between Foster and Bryn Mawr has pretty much gone underwater,” said Dan Luna, chief of staff for 48th Ward Alderman Harry Osterman. 

He said the fencing along Foster Beach had been repaired two years ago but is now under water. As of Oct. 20, there were no plans to improve the dog beach area because of the uncertainty of the upcoming winter season and its effects on the water levels next year, he added.

EVB also asked Luna today if there was talk about opening another dog beach at another location. Luna did not respond by press time. 

According to Zvezdana Kubat, assistant press secretary/social media manager for the Chicago Park District, there are 27 designated swimming beaches in the park district. Some see more of the impact of rising lake waters than others.

“People don’t stop to think that Lake Michigan is kind of like a living organism,” she said. “We don’t have as much control over it as Mother Nature does.”

Kubat did not respond to two email requests for further information. 

According to the Chicago Park District website, Foster Beach offers a beach house with food concessions, bike rentals and restrooms. The dog beach is located at the northeast end of the beach. 

The website said E.V Buchsbaum designed the beach house for Foster Beach. The beach house was constructed between the late 1950s and early 1960s. In the 1990s, a new beach house provided improved amenities, including bathrooms and concessions.

This is currently the off-season for the Chicago Park District’s designated swimming beaches, Kubat said. The designated swimming beaches are active Memorial Day through Labor Day.

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