UPTOWN — After a rising Lake Michigan and shifting sand drifts battered parts of the Montrose Dog Beach, the popular lakefront attraction is getting new fencing.
Crews are installing fencing around the perimeter of Montrose Dog Beach this week. It replaces fencing buried by sand and mangled by the lake.
The shifting lakefront geography virtually eliminated barricades between the dog beach and the people beach at Montrose Harbor in early 2020. But the lakefront destination was closed for much of the year because of the coronavirus pandemic.
The new fencing to section off the beaches will be taller than the previous one to ensure it is not as easily engulfed by sand, a Park District spokesperson said.
“It’s definitely been much needed since sand shifts and buries the fence,” said Shelly Burke, board member of MonDog PAC, the park advisory council that cares for the dog beach.
Shifting sands have buried other dog beach infrastructure, including benches, and has made it easy for dogs to escape. The new fencing extends around portions of the beach facing the park and streets.
The fence is going up in roughly the same area as the old one, so the dog beach will not expand. Some officials and park advocates were hoping to extend the fence south into the people beach to make up for beachfront lost to the lake.
Mutt Jackson, the business that offers pet washes at the dog beach, has reopened its services. It has also added a solar panel and will add a fourth washing station this summer, Burke said.
In other changes to the area, people driving their dogs to the beach will have to pay for parking near the amenity starting Friday, when pay-to-park meters will come online at Montrose Harbor.
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