Council hears updates on Saugeen Shores waterfront

Council heard several updates on Saugeen Shores’ waterfront this evening, from ideas for North Shore Trail to this year’s beach maintenance to the Southampton Pier Range Light.

North Shore Trail

Like many communities, Saugeen Shores has been dealing with the effects of temporary high water levels and the impact on infrastructure. North Shore Trail has experienced extensive damage, resulting in the closure of more than a third of that trail. Staff are investigating the requirements and cost to repair the trail; however, with the coastal engineering required, this will take many months or more, at a substantial cost.

Users continue to use the trail and road as a means of active transportation, despite the trail closure. To this end, staff is in the early stages of exploring whether North Shore Road and Miramichi Bay Road could be converted into one-way streets, with the closed lane becoming an active transportation trail.

The Share the Road Cycling Coalition is advocating that communities consider the public use of roadways as part of their COVID-19 recovery plans. Larger centres have successfully implemented some partially or fully closed streets to allow for physical distancing between pedestrians and cyclists.

Staff will be conducting public consultation in the coming weeks to gauge citizens’ opinions of converting these roads to one way and enhancing this active transportation route.

“These are early ideas for North Shore Trail,” said Mayor Charbonneau. “Council and staff are committed to public consultation as we explore ways to improve the conditions of this popular route.”

Beach maintenance

Due to COVID-19, many amenities, including beaches, remain closed by orders under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act.

At this time, however, there is a need to perform some maintenance on the beach to provide for safety, even if the beach is not currently open. Staff continue to put plans in place for maintenance activities and to provide appropriate service levels to all areas.

Southampton Pier Range Light

Photo by Saugeen Times

An increase in water levels and strong wave action have impacted not only the Southampton Pier Range Light’s exterior elements but also the interior integrity of the structure. Staff completed repair work in 2019; however, temporary high water levels have damaged the exterior of the building.

To date, staff have consulted with a number of authorities and groups and will continue with consultations and prepare a detailed repair and protection strategy.

For accurate COVID-19 information and resources from Saugeen Shores, visit