Saugeen Shores tackles shoreline erosion
WINGHAM, ONT. -- It's just the beginning, but Saugeen shores is taking its first crack at protecting part of its shoreline from erosion.
"The work we’re doing right now is temporary or interim work to shore up the shoreline," says Saugeen Shores Mayor, Luke Charbonneau.
The shoreline repair work is focused on the portions of the 6km North Shore Trail and Road that stretches between Port Elgin and Southampton. One third of the trail has been closed since spring due to erosion. There were fears, if nothing was done, and Mother Nature was left to her devices all winter, the trail and road could be severely damaged.
"We’ll get through the winter with this work, at the same time we’re doing the engineering work for a permanent solution, so that we can restore this trail and make sure doesn’t wash out again," says Charbonneau.
Hardening the shoreline is happening up and down the Lake Huron coast, as record setting lake levels batter the water’s edge. Shoreline protection work started in Goderich last fall, and is still ongoing, costing well over a million dollars.
"We have the funds in reserve to do the work. It’s absolutely essential the work gets done right away. We need the protection, so we’ll get it done," said Goderich Mayor, John Grace shortly after the erosion protection work started in Goderich last fall.
The situation ISN’T quite as bad in Saugeen Shores, but it could be without some protection FROM the raging waves this winter.
"If it can get this high once, it can get this high again, so we’ve got to engineer a solution that’s going to survive this or even higher lake levels in the future. We’re not going to spend a lot of money for a temporary solution. We need to find a permanent way to protect this road, this trail for a generation or more," says Charbonneau.
Sections of North Shore Road will be closed off and on throughout October as the repair work is underway. Most the North Shore Trail remains closed. Charbonneau hopes to start the permanent work to protect Saugeen Shores’ shoreline, next year.