Watershed Trust Members and many other concerned citizens have united to fight the Town of Clearview’s proposed expansion of County Road 26/27, a summer-only road that traverses sensitive Escarpment wetlands. Our last update was March 29 th , so it’s about time to let you know where we stand!

First off, our winter fund- and awareness-raising campaign was most successful. Thank you to all of you who have spoken up, written letters and contributed the funds we need to hire experts for the upcoming hearing. We are prepared.

What’s next 
The next event is an Ontario Land Tribunal (OLT) hearing taking place from November 8 th to December 17 th 2021. That’s a very long hearing, but the Watershed Trust is prepared with the environmental and engineering experts, as well as the top-drawer legal team, that we need. We have party at the hearing, which means that our testimony will influence the final decision.

The date of the hearing has not changed, but the nature of the organization overseeing it has. Schedule 6 of the recently passed Ontario Bill 245 Accelerating Access to Justice Act amalgamates a number of Boards and Tribunals under the OLT.  The Niagara Escarpment Hearing Office is now part of the OLT. That means we no longer have a separate environmental board experienced in complex environments issues.

What you can do
AWARE Simcoe, the Nature League and Save 91 are all standing in solidarity with the Watershed Trust on this issue. If you have not visited Save91.ca, please do so. There, you can sign a petition, find a list of local political representatives to contact, get a free lawn sign and contact our local news outlets.

As of July 16, over 890 people had signed the petition in support of stopping the closure of County Road 91. This has a real, tangible impact on the decision makers. Please sign at Save91.ca.

What we are doing now
Our environmental scientists North South  Environmental have been on the site investigating wild life especially the confirmation by acoustical tracking of bat species. Species at risk have been found there.

After the OLT hearing, we will be in a better position to know if additional efforts and expenditures are required. If you have information that you deem essential to this hearing, please email Tracee.Wessam@ont.ca, our Case Manager for the Ministry of the Attorney General.

Volunteers needed
The Watershed Trust is facing severe development pressures like we have never seen before along the Escarpment. The Castle Glen development is one that has recently been purchased by a large Toronto developer and the fight ahead will have a significant impact on Watershed Trust resources, both financial and human. We need more volunteers who can help us with membership, fundraising, accounting and bookkeeping, project managing and the like. If you are willing, please get involved. Contact carlmichener@watershedtrust.ca for further details.

See for yourself 
To get a real idea about what’s being proposed for SR 26.27, take a drive. From Duntroon, head west (uphill) on former CR91. Near the top you will see Walker’s quarries on both sides. They are impressive. Turn right at the top, heading north on the Osprey Clearview Townline, and stop at the first road on your right, 26/27 SR. Park and walk down towards CR 10. It’s a rough road, so bring your hiking shoes.

Thank you for your continued support.