Horizon Utilities Corporation partnered up with the City of St. Catharines, the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority and Ontario Power Generation to replace trees and plants in one part of the 12 Mile Creek corridor with more suitable and sustainable species.

The pilot project was completed in an effort to find an ecologically-friendly way of maintaining the vegetation under and around power lines that is safe and sustainable in the long term. The team planted close to 5,000 native wild flowers, grasses and shrubs.

12 Mile Creek Trail

Phase One: Site Preparation

The first phase of the project prepared the site for sustainable habitat for the creek. This involved the removal of hazardous and invasive trees from the path of the power lines in a section of the 12 Mile Creek Hydro Corridor near Hillcrest Avenue.

The trees were removed because they posed a threat to the integrity of the power system and to the safety of the members of public, Horizon Utilities employees and contractors who use or maintain the area.

Phase Two: Planting of Appropriate Species

The site was prepared for the planting of appropriate native species as recommended by restoration ecologists from the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority.

The new types of vegetation were selected because they are indigenous to the area and will not grow up into the lines, which reduces the need for future clearing. The planting pattern allows Horizon Utilities crews to safely access the area for repairs and maintenance with a minimal impact on the vegetation.

This process will also increase the ecological and biological diversity of the area and provide quality habitat for wildlife.

Wildflower seeds were planted directly under the power lines. An assortment of shrubs and trees were planted further away from the path of the lines and access routes for hydro vehicles. The growth of the new plants will be monitored on an ongoing basis.

Horizon employees planting shrubs 

Horizon Utilities is working to meet its responsibility to deliver safe, reliable electricity to customers while protecting the environment.

For more information, please email sustainability@horizonutilities.com or call 905-984-8961 in St. Catharines (toll free 1-866-458-1236).

Partner's Logos 

The project is a partnership of Horizon Utilities Corporation, the City of St. Catharines, Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority and Ontario Power Generation.