Causeway willows coming down

“Rig mat” decking has been placed on the causeway between Long Point and Port Rowan as a temporary repair for a wooden bridge that is beginning to fail.

The Long Point Causeway will have a different look once a multi-million dollar repair is complete. Most of the old willow trees along the 3.2-kilometre road have an appointment with the chainsaw. The project includes construction of a new roadbed and a widening of the roadway to accommodate paved bike lanes. As such, the trees have to go.

Mayor Charlie Luke told council Tuesday that more than 100 trees will be removed. Total cost of cutting them down is about $97,000. “They are at the end of their useful life.”

Chris Baird, Norfolk’s general manager of public works, told council. “Branches are constantly coming down. Most will come out but they will be replaced.”

Langton Coun. Roger Geysens said losing the willows will present county contractors with an engineering challenge. Geysens said the trees have anchored the road bed for decades. In their absence, public works will have to come up with another way to hold the road in place.

The Long Point Causeway connects Port Rowan with the cottage community of Long Point. It runs between the Big Creek Marsh on the west and Long Pont Bay to the east. The causeway is the sole road in and out of Long Point. The causeway sees little traffic in the off season but is well travelled in spring and summer.

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