Home Points of View Letters to the Editor Waterfront more fragile than we realize says reader

Waterfront more fragile than we realize says reader

To the Editor:

Yesterday, January 30th, my husband and I walked the Port Elgin beach. There wasn’t much there.
Continued high lake levels have kept the visible beach to a minimal presence. Significant erosion on either side of the new viewing platform is concerning.
All of the park benches on the south end of the beach are buried up to their sitting areas. The shade structure on the south end of the beach (closest to the viewing platform) will certainly have to be dug out and/or moved.
The Saugeen Times reported that the US Army Corps of Engineers has predicted that Lake Huron will continue to rise and peak in June of this Year.  It seems to us that building closer to the lake is hugely problematic.
If lake levels remain high or continue to fluctuate over the span of the proposed 50 year lease for the Cedar Crescent Village then the town has given away any flexibility in dealing with this. Build closer to the road and then there is flexibility to salvage a beach. Moving parking areas to ensure that there is ‘towel space’ is an option. Hard structures close to the water limit any ability to deal with high lake levels.  We still believe that all these buildings on the beach aren’t needed.
We are fully behind the Lake Huron Centre for Coastal Conservation and their vision for the revitalization of the entire Lake Huron shoreline. Having said that, we realize that others believe that monetizing the beach is more important than protecting it. We have the opportunity at this time to really rethink how we treat and protect our waterfront. It is far more fragile than we realize.
We sadly don’t think that the town or the proponents of this project are interested in a more natural beach environment.
So, if buildings must be built (and we dearly wish that they weren’t) please bring them up to the road. Don’t sacrifice the beach nearest the water.Thank you
Jackie & Tim Hammond, Port Elgin ON
PS We do support a more collaborative approach to this matter. Bring all the parties together. If the investors are really serious about this project being for the people then we think they need to listen to the people and try to accommodate their/our concerns.