(10) comments Back to story

Beverly West

It’s not the residents that are the problem. The residents are dealing with the onslaught of tourists that are blocking the streets with their cars, using their showers and leaving beer cans and bottles behind.

Kelly Naschke

I don’t see an easy solution. I see a growing problem.

Tom Brown

Well, it is not the tourists or the non-beachfront property owners living here that are blocking or doing whatever to deter beach goers from a legally mandated beach access point, So who is doing it? Why is it allowed by the city and not corrected for so long? People going to the beach don't call city council to complain or make them aware, they just go on down the highway to find another access point. Those who didn't want cars on their beach knew they were required to provide the parking but now they don't want that either.,Jerry Patterson basically warned this could happen with population growth and that you might not like that either. Lorraine Brown West End property owner As for tourists going under the houses that is not good but it is a policing issue .I do believe a constant police patrol car driving the actual west end beaches day and night, has been needed for years..like they do in some other popular Texas coastline cities, along with signage for access and more. I watched the police many years ago in Corpus actually pull up to people on the beach and make them pick up their beer cans and trash.

Charlene Adams

West end residents have always tried to block the legal public access to the beaches. Police need to start giving out huge fines for destroying signs and/or obscuring them. It is the right of EVERY person to access our beaches in Texas, not just the rich!!

Bill Broussard

"As for: "Our subdivision was never meant to accommodate large, large crowds," Zahler said. " You are so right Peggy but our west end developers did sign on for what we have as a statement of compliance with the State law, so it is what they were informed and consented to all these years. Hate to say it but Patterson told you so.

As for "He doesn't think people intentionally block beach access, but there are issues with signage that the committee hopes to address in its recommendations, he said." Ask the City how many no parking and tow away signs they have removed from your next-door neighbor's Pirates Beach since January. Then they just then Pop Up again, Jerry.

As for "The Texas General Land Office, which maintains state beaches and enforces the open beaches act, hasn't received any official complaints about homeowners blocking beach access, spokeswoman Karina Erickson said." Please walk down to your former colleague Rajiv J. Vedamanikam's office and get the file from his replacement. I think you might find a few.

Finally, much of the new traffic and crowds discovered the west end in the wake of the seawall parking fees. The irony is that Mr. Mohn wearing one of his other hats besides chair of WGIPOA, but rather as a strong member of the Galveston Chamber of Commerce was one of the main promoters of the Seawall Parking ordinance when it first was proposed but you never hear that "accomplishment" on the West End any longer. Matter of fact, that fact dropped from conversation about three months after the ordinance first passed. Talk about unintended consequences."

(Edited by staff.)

Raylene Morgan

[ninja] Before it got to this point, which it never should have. As a BOI, when I was a little boy the West End Beach was accessed directly off the Seawall. You drove to the end then down a large ramp directly onto the sand. You then drove as far as you could to find a spot to park and enjoy the beach. The houses were protected by large dunes and there was no access to those properties because of the dunes. I suppose with the many increased home owners, properties are now closer to the coastline which open them up to be vulnerable to unwanted tourist. Not sure if it could be done, because you cannot undo what is done (expanded home owners on the sand); but some sort of closed off physical property line that would not allow access for tourist to enter underneath anyone's home which would eliminate any unwanted activity and trash left on one's property. As far as the trash on the beach, ppl are going leave trash. As a Galveston Ball student my summer job was with the City of Galveston, I was on the Beach Trash Clean Up crew that went into work at 5am and we walked from end to end picking up the trash M-F. Mr. Twymon was our Manager and Mr. Lawrence was the driver/supervisor of our truck. I said that b/c I don't know if there is still a dept that deploys a Beach Clean Up Crew. There should be total and complete access to the every inch of the beach deemed safe for anyone and a property line block to protect the home owners. As for the report that they (Park Board) haven't rec'c any complaints about the access points being blocked, dunes made by property owners to deter the tourist, and signs removal is contradicting. Obviously it has and is happening if not, then why report it in this article. Allow access like it use to be from the end of the seawall onto the sand, and figure out some sort of "physical property line" that protects the residents. Issue solved. Unless there is a hidden agenda that certain parts of West Beach has quote unquote become a "private" beach which the residents of all of Galveston probably pay taxes on and yet have no access to as being said residents.

Margaret Baldwin

People might be inclined to leave trash, yet there are other communities that have pretty much solved that problem. I lived on beach in Ponce Inlet (a bit south of Daytona Beach); Clearwater, Florida; Cannon Beach, Oregon and Ogunquit, Maine. Daytona has a long history of driving on the beach and crowds are massive. Clearwater no driving, yet huge crowds as well. Cannon Beach (and much of Oregon) has a "pack in, pack out" tradition. Ogunquit beachside cottage owners own all the way to the low-water mark; unfortunately no public-access in majority of town. In all the years I lived beachside, I never saw trash on the beach. Seriously. No matter where I was, I could walk at sunrise and only see beach.... no mounds of beer cans, baby diapers, leftover food and discarded beach umbrellas. We had a very active and well-staffed Beach Patrol in Daytona & Clearwater (I'm not sure what entities managed the other beaches). These communities have figured out how to host record crowds, and I'm thinking they would certainly share their "best practices" with us.

Steve Fouga

Here in the real world, when we don't want people on our property we install fences. Works almost every time... [cool]

Nancy Fry

Yes, people who own 'waterfront property' tend to believe they own every part of it from their house to the water. At the 'Caribbean of the Rockies' which is Bear Lake Utah/Idaho, everyone thinks their beachfront property from the house to the water is theirs too. Outside of their property lines it is actually Sovereign Lands owned by Utah and considered everyone's however, there are designated public access beaches. What's funny is the only time there are beaches is when the lake is extremely low. Anyway, if you go to Newport Beach near Disneyland in California, all their beachfront properties butt up against a public walkway and they have a small retaining wall between private property and public property. Something like that might work in this case.

Patricia C Newsom

Please read the “Open Beaches Act†on the Texas General Land office site. As stated in the original deed or grant from Spain to Texas conveying the coast to Texas, the beaches shall remain open to the public and the public shall have assess to the beaches. IT IS THE LAW, with very few exceptions.

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