Starke County Park Board Discusses Plans for Beach House Patio Repair, Eventual Beach Restoration

The Bass Lake Beach may be getting some more repairs in the near future. Efforts to stabilize the beach house patio have been started by local residents and the Starke County Park Board, working with the Indiana Department of Natural Resources.

Resident Rick Anderson told the park board Tuesday that the seawall installed in 1988 is beginning to show its age. “There’s about a half-an-inch to a one-inch gap from the top of the seawall all the way down to the lake bottom, and that allows water to come in the crack and drag sand out,” he explained. “I don’t know how wide it is, but you can see the lake right through the crack up on top of the patio.”

He suggested that the patio be repaired and refilled with sand. “That’s something that needs to be done because it’s just going to get worse and worse,” Anderson said. “And as it goes out, the concrete patio could collapse, eventually, if you got enough of the sand out from under there. So that should be fixed.”

Meanwhile, DNR officials have suggested installing glacial stone around the existing seawall. The idea is that the stone would absorb some of the wave energy before it hits the wall. Anderson estimates that would cost about $7,000 to $8,000. Park Board President Debbie Mix plans to meet with the Starke County Commissioners to get their permission before moving ahead with those efforts.

In the long-term, Anderson also suggested that the county come up with a comprehensive plan for the beach itself. He pointed out that sand may be dredged from the lake and placed 10 feet in from the shore line.

On top of that, rocks can be placed along the rest of the beach to prevent some sand erosion. “Now had this been done 30 years ago, there would be another 40 or 50 feet of beach on the Bass Lake Beach, no question about that,” Anderson said. “Now if nothing is done now, you can just figure in 10 years, you’re probably have 10 or 20 foot less beach. That’s just how things work, and I don’t think that’s a very good idea. So there should be a plan on the whole beach.”

Mix suggested that a formal committee be put together to work on the plan.