The East Bay Regional Park District is set to reopen Point Isabel Regional Shoreline on Monday, June 1, 2020, with special restrictions to keep dogs on leash. Point Isabel was closed on Thursday, April 2, 2020, due to updated local health agency “shelter in place” orders requiring closure of dog parks. Point Isabel was closed out of an abundance of caution to limit crowding and maintain social distancing.
When the park reopens, the temporary districtwide restriction to keep dogs on leash because of COVID-19 and social distancing requirements will be in effect. “We know this park has traditionally allowed off leash dogs who run and play along the shoreline,” said Park District General Manager Robert Doyle.
The on-leash reasoning is that off-leash dogs tend to group together. This leads their owners to convene as well, making it difficult to maintain the social distance of six feet designed to prevent spread of the virus. Currently, all East Bay Regional Parks that allow dogs have the temporary leash restriction.
Point Isabel Regional Shoreline is best known as a place for dogs and their owners for off leash recreation and a popular gathering spot for doggie playdates. However, windsurfers, kitesurfers, and kayakers also use the shoreline for recreation. Reopening will provide access for those users too. More recently, Point Isabel shoreline has been designated as a trailhead launch site for kayakers as part of the Bay Water Trail.
"I'm delighted that Point Isabel will be re-opening on Monday" said EBRPD Board Member Elizabeth Echols who represents this area. "Point Isabel is much loved and I know that its many visitors are excited to enjoy the park again."
New signage with the temporary leash requirement is being installed at the park. Restrooms and parking will be accessible. Mudpuppy’s and Sit & Stay Cafe, the park’s concessionaire that provides dogs washes and coffee/food, will reopen on June 4.
“We understand people need parks for health, wellness, and stress relief, now more than ever,” said Doyle. “We are doing everything we can to keep parks open for the public during the COVID-19 crisis and need the public’s help.”
Visit www.ebparks.org/coronavirus for up-to-date information about COVID-19 park and park area closures.
The East Bay Regional Park District is the largest regional park system in the nation, comprising 73 parks, 55 miles of shoreline, and over 1,300 miles of trails for hiking, biking, horseback riding, and environmental education. The Park District receives more than 25 million visits annually throughout Alameda and Contra Costa counties in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Dave Mason, Public Information Supervisor