Pokémon Go signs posted at Marina; Facebook page & letter sent out to players
As many of Readers know, the Pokémon Go game craze continues in Des Moines, especially around the Marina and Beach Park.
Dozens, sometimes hundreds of “Trainers” (aka Players) continue to show up and wander around the area, playing the game while walking and looking mostly at their smartphones.
As we first reported last week, this revolutionary new game has created a concern amongst residents, who have complained about after-hours players abusing public spaces with unwanted noise, litter, alcohol, drug use and more – often going into the wee hours of the morning while searching for virtual critters.
This week, the City responded by creating a Pokémon Go Facebook page with updates on the situation:
And on Tuesday (Aug. 30), the City and Marina released the following statement from Harbormaster Joe Dusenberry, with a message related to new signage that will be posted in the area:
Good Afternoon Pokémon Go Community
This last Saturday the City put up signs in the Marina asking people to conclude their gaming by 10:00 PM. The response has been very positive and the City appreciates the efforts of the Pokémon Community to minimize the game’s impacts on our Marina tenants and neighbors. We will continue to keep the Community informed about issues in the Marina by posting updates on this Facebook page.
As we stated in an earlier post on this page, the City considers providing safe access to the waterfront one of its primary functions. The Marina hosts many special events during the year and the staff knows how to manage the impacts that large crowds can have. The issue with Pokémon Go is that unlike a regular “special event” that is scheduled for a certain day and time period, the Game takes place every day with no set stopping time. This difference makes maintaining a safe and secure venue for all the visitors to the Marina and Beach Park very difficult and it is stretching the capabilities of our Police Department and public safety staff, which in turn, causes negative impacts in the rest of our City.
It is imperative that the Pokémon Go Community continues to observe the 10 PM closure of gaming activities. Also, it is very important that people do not play the game while driving thru the Marina and Beach Park, This is essentially the same as texting while driving which we all know is very dangerous. This will be a point of emphasis by our Police officers.
On a personal note, I am struck by the large numbers of people, diverse in every way, that come here to enjoy playing the game and interacting with other people in very respectful and positive ways. In my many, (too many) years of working in waterfront facilities I have never seen anything like this. Please be safe and watch out for each other.
Also, if you haven’t taken it yet, please cast your vote in our Poll below: