Man’s video captures vanishing shoreline
Infilling on Bedford waterfront will pave way for 16-hectare development
By CLARE MELLOR
Mark Currie hopes images he has captured of a small piece of nat ural shoreline and a reef in Bed ford Basin tell the story.
“As you know, images are worth a thousand words," he said Wednesday.
The area near small Crosby Island in Bedford Basin is teem ing with life and home to nesting sandpipers, mud crabs, fish and jellyfish.
But the area where he takes his 11-year-old son beachcomb ing is likely to soon vanish due to infilling operations on the Bed ford waterfront, said Currie, a longtime Bedford resident.
With the help of a friend, Currie has created a video of the area and posted it on You Tube.
“Thirty years from now, I can look at my son and say at least I said something."
The Waterfront Development Corp. is infilling the shoreline of Bedford Basin to create 16 hec tares of land that will eventually be home to a new commercial and residential development, a public building such as a library, and a boardwalk.
The development, unveiled at a public meeting in June, could take more than 20 years to build. It will run along the Bedford Highway from the Clearwater Seafoods property to the Bouti lier boatyard on Shore Drive.
Currie said he expressed his concern to Waterfront Devel opment officials about the nat ural area at the June meeting.
“I knew the habitat area exist ed. . . . What they had stated for the record was that the only original shoreline left was the little southern edge of Crosby Island," he said.
“They basically didn’t acknowledge that there was more shoreline there."
That’s when Currie decided to capture it on video.
“I figured if they are not going to acknowledge it at the public session then I’ll take it upon myself to acknowledge it public ly."
On Wednesday, Eric Burchill said the Waterfront Development Corp. is looking into the issue.
“This is new information to us. . . . It will take us a little time to look into it and see if there is anything further that needs to be done," said Burchill, director of planning and development with the corporation.
Infilling, which is roughly 60 per cent complete, has been going on for almost a decade now, he said.
“It had an environmental impact assessment conducted prior to operations commencing, and we have always followed all the required federal and pro vincial regulatory requirements.
. . . There was no issue that I am aware of with regard to nesting habitat."
While there are plans to infill the area in question at some point, Burchill said infilling is currently going on in deeper water away from Crosby Island.
“There will be no operations that will be impacting it current ly."
Bedford Coun. Tim Outhit said he has heard some concerns from residents about the pro posed development, but none about the infilling encroaching on habitat.
“Residents sometimes say to me, ‘How long is this going to go on?’ and this sort of thing, but nobody has contacted me to say stop the infilling," he said Wednesday.
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