Volunteers needed for ESA Day – Sept 17-18

The Upper Thames River Conservation Authority (UTRCA) in cooperation with the City is holding an ESA Day during the annual Doors Open weekend September, Saturday the 17th and Sunday September the 18th.  Please email opsfrp@gmail.com if you are interested and available to help by handing out brochures at the Longbow/Wychwood entrance or leading informative walks for visitors.  Shifts are  Saturday or Sunday 9-11:30 or 11:30-2.  The goal is to raise awareness of ESAs as special places that are to be enjoyed through appropriate uses.  There will also be similar activities during these times at Westminster Ponds ESA (the city visitor centre on Wellington Road) and at Killaly Meadows ESA (at the end of Windemere Road, east of Adelaide).  All free!

Medway Trail Clean Up – Saturday, April 23

Friday is Earth Day.  So in the spirit of taking care of our planet it is time for the Thames River and Medway Creek clean up and doing our part for our local Medway Creek!

WHEN: Saturday April 23rd

WHERE: 410 Ambleside Drive Condo Complex Visitors Parking

WHAT TIME: 9:00 AM- 12:00 PM

Drinks and supplies will be available at the event

Medway Valley Heritage Forest ESA Conservation Master Plan

The Conservation Master Plan for the Medway Valley Heritage Forest Environmentally Significant Area (ESA) is being presented by staff to the Planning and Environment Committee of City Council at a public participation meeting on Monday, July 26. The item will be heard no earlier than 6 pm. The meeting will be via Zoom with no in person attendance by the public.

Members of the public are required to pre-register to speak at the public participation meeting. You must pre-register no later than 9:00 a.m. the day of the meeting. Pre-register by calling 519-661-2489 ext. 7100 or contact PPMClerks@london.ca Please indicate the meeting (Planning and Environment Committee meeting of July 26th at 6 pm regarding the Medway Valley ESA Conservation Master Plan and item when contacting the Clerk’s Office.

Registered speakers will be given the information to connect to the Zoom meeting and will also be able to present by phone. Directions on how to participate will be provided upon registration. Speakers will be limited to five minutes for their presentation.

If you wish to have a written submission on the committee meeting agenda, it can be sent to PEC@london.ca prior to 9 am on Monday, July 19th.

We believe this plan reflects what the majority of our community has said about the Valley for the past 25 years.

The full Conservation Master Plan can be downloaded from https://getinvolved.london.ca/medway-valley-cmp

Metamora sewer remediation project on-site info session – Tues, Mar 16, 9:30 am

Councillor Squire has been able to arrange an on-site information session with City staff about the Metamore sewer remediation project. He and city staff will be at the Metamora entrance to the ESA tomorrow, Tuesday, March 16, at 9:30 a.m. to meet with residents. Please observe COVID protocols and maintain social distancing. Sorry for the short notice.

Here is the latest from the city engineer who is leading the project.

In total, there will be 52 trees larger than 10 cm removed from the area. Of these, 11 are considered invasive species and another two are in failing health. Another 20 smaller trees will be removed. A Tree Inventory and health assessment was completed by a Certified Arborist to aid in determining the trees that would be removed. These removals are necessary in order to complete the stormwater outfall replacement. Tree removal has to take place before April 1 as the city has to comply with the Migratory Bird Convention Act.

As with any City of London project, our goal is to limit the number of removals and minimize our project footprint to the best of our abilities. The scoped Environmental Impact Study (EIS) is ongoing; the background information regarding the natural heritage has been collected and a two-season flora/fauna inventory was completed. The EIS will outline the requirements for land restoration once a design is finalized. The consultant should have a preliminary design by the end of the week. Once the city project managers are confident in the design, the Environmental Impact Study will progress to make recommendations based on the design footprint. At that point, the City will develop a presentation for the residents outlining the details of the design and EIS recommendations/land restoration plan. This will likely occur in May. For the time being, city staff have requested the consultant supply them with a preliminary landscape/layout of the area. This of course is subject to change.

In its current state, the outfall is failing and has caused extensive erosion on the surrounding slopes and into the creek. Several of the trees surrounding the current outfall have extensive root exposure which impacts the health of the tree. Without addressing this structure, further damage to the natural heritage may occur. We are currently in the design phase for the project. Although preliminary in nature, the proposed works looks to use a more natural design that blends in with the surrounding natural heritage and creek system. To prevent erosion and to protect the slopes in the area, a series of energy dissipating drop structures are proposed down to the creek to slow the flow of water from the outfall. Natural channel design will be utilized to tie into the creek. A land restoration plan will be developed to ensure trees are replaced at a 3:1 ratio, at a minimum, and use native species. A letter detailing the design and anticipated construction schedule will be sent out as the design progresses (likely June). Due to Covid-19, we are unable to host a Public Information Centre to share project information. Instead, information will be made available virtually for the residents of the area. More information on how to access this information will be provided in the Spring letter.

Trail Closure

You may have seen a Trail Closure notice at the Metamora bridge in the Medway. We have already indicated to the city staff involved that the community supports repairing the bridge. However, because the bridge has been deemed structurally unstable, the City is required to close approaches to the bridge. We have been told that the area shown on the map that is closed includes the entrance to the Valley that is behind the Monastery because the City cannot direct users to private properties.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact city staff directly as per the information on the attached, or we can pass along comments and replies.