Paddle Park Proposal Approved

The park will have an easily accessible kayak and canoe launch.

DULUTH, Minn.- A new park dedicated to non motorized watercraft will be put in place near the bottom of Spirit Mountain on the St. Louis River it was approved by the Duluth City Council Monday night.

Some community members spoke out at the city council meeting last night saying the park catering to non motorized vehicles will fill a niche the community is currently missing. Others are voicing concerns that construction in this area would have negative effects on the environment.

The Duluth City Council approval of seven to two on Monday night goes against the city’s park and recreation commission’s recommendation of six to four turning down the park. The project would add a universally accessible paddle launch, which many say would benefit disabled outdoor enthusiasts.

“Finally they feel like somebody actually does care about them and how important it is for the city to be able to have this opportunity,” Duluth City Counselor Barb Russ said.

Two councilors, Renee Van Nett and Gary Anderson voted against the Paddle Park.

Gary Anderson says he supports adding a more accessible area for handicapped individuals but still has concerns with the location.

“So that’s a good thing that’s coming out of this,” Duluth City Counselor Gary Anderson said. “I just wish that there had been a deeper study as to the other sites that would potentially be available for use for this kind of a park.”

The approved proposal puts the Paddle Park across the lower chalte at Spirit Mountain. The dock will be placed near Tallas Island.

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