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Monday, April 20, 2015

Environment - Protest continues against DNR plans to build banquet center on Dunes State Park prime beachfront

On March 12, 2015 the ILB had its first post on the latest iteration of efforts to commercialize the Indiana Dunes State Park. It was headed "Who approved the stealth project to build a banquet center on Dunes State Park prime beachfront? Who knew?"

A similar Statehouse effort from 2005-2006 was summarized in this June 2, 2006 ILB post. This post from Jan. 25, 2006 looked at issues and the need for an environmental impact assessment, as did this one from Jan. 29, 2006.

This newly located Fall 2006 story by Jeff Fleischer in Chicago Wilderness tells of the 2005-2006 effort and is worth reading.

The story also includes a good photo, taken looking eastward from a vantage point at or beyond the westmost boundary of the Park (where it abuts Johnson's Beach), showing the pristine beachfront and the setting of the Pavilion. Although the actual lakefront of the Indiana Dunes State Park is about four miles long, the only swimming beach is the several hundred foot stretch shown in the photo, ending about where the first wooded area appears. The rest of the narrow Lake Michigan beach in the Park may be walked, but other than that, the park is a nature preserve with the public limited to marked trails and designated camping/picnicking areas. [Correction: According to the DNR brochure, the entire beachfront is only 3 miles long and the State Park is just 2,182 acres.]

(This DNR brochure includes a detailed map of the State Park; this map shows how the State Park fits within the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore.)

On Sunday, April 12, 2015 the ILB had a wrap-up of stories about the most current effort. Now, a week later, there are many new stories, all dateline April 15 or 16, 2015:

Posted by Marcia Oddi on April 20, 2015 08:50 AM
Posted to Environment | Indiana Government