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More water available for happy boaters as Town Lake’s buoy line gets closer to western dam

Post Date:02/15/2019 9:30 AM

Tempe Town Lake boaters will raise their paddles with glee as they will have an extra quarter mile of lake to use starting Tuesday, Feb. 19.  We’re moving the buoy lines closer to the Elmore Pedestrian Bridge at Tempe Center for the Arts

Thousands of people boat on Town Lake each year. Beyond the City of Tempe classes, there are dragon boat clubs, outrigger canoe clubs, and opportunities to kayak, use standup paddleboards and even rent those fun pedal boats.

The buoy line keeps people all safely within the area designated for recreation. It also provides an extra safety opportunity for someone in the event they fall into the lake while water is flowing over the dam during a flood event. 

As part of the dam replacement project, the City of Tempe conducted an analysis to find out where the best place to position the new buoy line would be, allowing for the maximum amount of lake surface for recreation while also ensuring safety. This new location, close to Tempe Center for the Arts, met those needs. The actual length of the lake is not changing - only the amount that is usable for recreation. 

The new buoy line matches the Elmore Pedestrian Bridge with its white, pipe-like design. From a distance, it looks like a reflection of the bridge. Arizona Game and Fish will remove the old buoy line and reuse parts of it at other lakes.

The additional boating space may also help attract more boating regattas to Tempe Town Lake, creating more hotel nights and tourism revenue.  

Town Lake has already proven itself as a great destination for boating, hosting large regattas like Desert Sprints, the annual Dragon Boat Festival. This winter, Olympians Henrik Rummel and Seth Weil are training for the 2020 Olympic Games at Tempe Town Lake.

For more information on boating at Tempe Town Lake, visit

new buoy line
Birds enjoy the new buoy line at Tempe Town Lake for fishing. 

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