West Point Lighthouse

MLA for O’Leary-Inverness Robert Henderson chats with West Point resident Carol Livingstone with the area’s historic lighthouse in the background. On July 23, the provincial and federal governments announced joint funding for a $1.5 million shoreline protection project for the Cedar Dunes Provincial Park, which includes the West Point Lighthouse. Melissa Heald photo

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Carol Livingstone is hopeful a new project to protect the shoreline at West Point will give the area’s historic lighthouse a longer lifespan.

“There is an old quote from a lighthouse magazine and it was that the lighthouses have looked after us for many years and now it’s our turn to look after the lighthouses,” said the West Point resident.

On July 23, the provincial and federal governments announced joint funding for a $1.5 million shoreline protection project for the Cedar Dunes Provincial Park, which includes the West Point Lighthouse.

Not only is Ms Livingstone the great-granddaughter of the lighthouse’s original keeper and has a lifetime of memories associated with the historic building, she also began the West Point Development Corporation in the mid-1980s. The development of the lighthouse to include an inn and museum, the addition of the Harbourside Centre and Cedar Dunes Provincial Park, has become the driving force of the tourism economy in the area.

But shoreline erosion and weather events like Post-Topical Storm Dorian continue to put the lighthouse and the nearby provincial park in jeopardy.

This new shoreline protection project will see five inter-tidal reefs constructed to help break the waves before they reach the beach to reduce the amount of shoreline being washed away. A sandstone seawall extension between the parking lot and waterline will prevent flooding of the park and damage to the lighthouse. Another sandstone structure will also be built at the southern tip of the beach to keep the sand from getting swept into the harbour.

The Government of Canada is investing $700,000 and the Government of Prince Edward Island is providing $910,000 for this project through the Green Infrastructure Stream (GIS) of the Investing in Canada infrastructure plan.

Egmont MP Bobby Morrissey was joined by the MLA for Alberton-Bloomfield Ernie Hudson to make the announcement at the West Point Harbourside Centre.

“It’s tremendously exciting to hear this is going to happen and hopefully it will work,” said Ms Livingstone.

The work is scheduled to begin in mid-September, following the 2020 tourism session.

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