Long Point causeway project enjoys $10,000 windfall

Simcoe Reformer, Feb. 28, 2012

The Long Point Causeway Improvement Project has won some windfall cash in an environmental promotional campaign sponsored by a major Canadian oil company. LPCIP is one of 40 projects across the country to receive $10,000 in funding from Shell Canada’s FuelingChange environmental program.

“We are grateful that Shell Canada recognized the causeway project as a worthwhile environmental initiative that deserved its support,” Paula Jongerden, chair of the LPCIP steering committee, said this week in a news release.

The causeway project was one of 54 environmental initiatives that Shell Canada approved to compete for $1 million in funding. Grants of $100,000, $50,000 and $25,000 have been awarded to 14 organizations and their undertakings based on the number of votes they received in an Internet poll. Those finishing out of the top tier received the $10,000 consolation prizes.

“Although we didn’t receive enough votes to win the $100,000 we had applied for, we were very pleased with support we received from people in Norfolk,” Jongerden said.

Jongerden noted that the Long Point causeway project was competing in a popularity contest that featured environmental projects supported by large urban centres and national environmental groups.

The centrepiece of the causeway project is the installation of three “eco-passages” under the 3.6-kilometre stretch of road linking Port Rowan and Long Point. The passageways are expected to cut down on wildlife mortality by allowing turtles, snakes, frogs and small mammals to travel between Long Point Bay and the Big Creek Marsh without having to cross the roadway.

One of the passageways will restore the historic connection between the marsh and the bay when a bridge was replaced with a road bed 60 years ago. This will improve the flow of water between the bay and the marsh while opening new spawning grounds for fish.

Norfolk County has ordered an environmental review of the proposed improvements to the causeway. LPCIP is covering the cost of the assessment.