NPCA & COVID-19

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The Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority (NPCA) is closely monitoring the COVID-19 situation in Ontario and taking steps to help prevent the spread of infection.

On this page, you will find the most up-to date information on impacts to NPCA programs and services, including cancellations, closures, and processes for re-opening. If you'd like to receive notice when this page is updated, click 'Sign Up' on the right.

Please refer to the Frequently Asked Questions relating to NPCA services, events, programs, and more.

The NPCA has the following measures in place to proactively protect staff and members of the public from the potential risk of contracting COVID-19:

  • Closure of NPCA Main Office and park buildings until further notice.
  • The postponement of all in-person conferences and events until further notice.
  • Scheduling of monthly virtual Full-Authority Board of Directors meetings since April 2020.

PLEASE NOTE THE FOLLOWING:

  • All NPCA conservation areas remain open for passive use such as hiking and bird watching.
  • A list of NPCA properties and corresponding facilities and amenities can be found at www.npca.ca/parks, where details pertaining to available amenities, services and activities are also posted.
  • Washroom facilities are only available at Ball's Falls Centre for Conservation, Long Beach, Chippawa Creek, and Binbrook Conservation Areas.
  • NPCA's Enforcement, Planning & Regulations staff will continue to operate remotely, and will be available by telephone and email to assist you as necessary.

Public Health- COVID-19 Websites:

Available Tools Below:
Q&A: If you have questions that we haven't answered in the list of FAQs, please send us your question using the Q&A tool below and we'll do our best to address them in a timely manner.

COVID-19 Timeline: A detailed, chronology of NPCA actions and important dates up until July 2020. Followed by COVID-19 major announcements only up until April 2021.

Survey: Fill out this quick 1-minute survey and tell us if this portal helped you find what you were looking for.

The Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority (NPCA) is closely monitoring the COVID-19 situation in Ontario and taking steps to help prevent the spread of infection.

On this page, you will find the most up-to date information on impacts to NPCA programs and services, including cancellations, closures, and processes for re-opening. If you'd like to receive notice when this page is updated, click 'Sign Up' on the right.

Please refer to the Frequently Asked Questions relating to NPCA services, events, programs, and more.

The NPCA has the following measures in place to proactively protect staff and members of the public from the potential risk of contracting COVID-19:

  • Closure of NPCA Main Office and park buildings until further notice.
  • The postponement of all in-person conferences and events until further notice.
  • Scheduling of monthly virtual Full-Authority Board of Directors meetings since April 2020.

PLEASE NOTE THE FOLLOWING:

  • All NPCA conservation areas remain open for passive use such as hiking and bird watching.
  • A list of NPCA properties and corresponding facilities and amenities can be found at www.npca.ca/parks, where details pertaining to available amenities, services and activities are also posted.
  • Washroom facilities are only available at Ball's Falls Centre for Conservation, Long Beach, Chippawa Creek, and Binbrook Conservation Areas.
  • NPCA's Enforcement, Planning & Regulations staff will continue to operate remotely, and will be available by telephone and email to assist you as necessary.

Public Health- COVID-19 Websites:

Available Tools Below:
Q&A: If you have questions that we haven't answered in the list of FAQs, please send us your question using the Q&A tool below and we'll do our best to address them in a timely manner.

COVID-19 Timeline: A detailed, chronology of NPCA actions and important dates up until July 2020. Followed by COVID-19 major announcements only up until April 2021.

Survey: Fill out this quick 1-minute survey and tell us if this portal helped you find what you were looking for.

Have a question? We have an answer!

We're here to answer any questions you may have. If you have questions that we haven't answered in the list of FAQs, please send us your question and we'll do our best to address them in a timely manner.

Please note that the FAQs covers topics such as Conservation Area use, Camping, Educational Programming, Thanksgiving Festival, Weddings, Planning and Regulations, Enforcement and Compliance, Flooding, and more. 

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    Why is there a fee of $8 per person to visit Balls Falls and the heritage buildings aren't even open?

    Larry D asked 2 months ago

    Good morning Larry, thanks for reaching out to us via this medium!

    The NPCA offers access to 41 conservation areas across the watershed, which includes all of Niagara Region, and portions of Hamilton and Haldimand. Of those 41 areas, 4 are considered active recreational areas (including Ball's Falls), with additional amenities such as washroom facilities, interpretive signage, fishing piers and more.

    These areas are staffed and gated, and charge a daily admission fee during operating seasons and hours. While the heritage buildings are not open, our dedicated team of staff remain on site to ensure it is regularly maintained and as beautiful as can be for our visitors. 

    Admission fees to Ball’s Falls, Binbrook, Chippawa Creek and Long Beach Conservation Areas help the NPCA to deliver programs and services and ensure the maintenance, restoration and preservation of not only these four conservation areas, but all 41 areas across the watershed.

    We do recognize that admission fees to these four areas can be prohibitive for some folks and families. We have partnered with a several libraries across the Niagara Region to provide our NaturePlus Pass through a Library Loaner program. Below is a list of the libraries that are offering the 2021 NaturePlus Pass loan program. More information can be found in the attached links. There are no fees associated, families simply need a library card to take out a pass and use it to access conservation areas, including Ball’s Falls.

     
    There are also many NPCA conservation areas across the watershed that do not take admission fees, and provide access to hiking trails, recreational waters, and fishing opportunities. Except for the four primary conservation areas, the remaining 37 areas listed here are free to access and provide excellent greenspaces for families to step into nature: https://npca.ca/parks-recreation/conservation-areas

    We hope this information helps. We always appreciate feedback.

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    Ball's Fall open tomorrow-Sunday June 13 for hiking?

    ted asked 3 months ago

    Hello Ted, thank you for reaching out through this portal and our sincere apologies for the delayed response. 

    Ball's Falls, as well as our other flagship properties like Binbrook, Long Beach, and Chippawa Creek, are open 7 days a week, dawn until dusk. The only exception to the parks being open is if they have reached capacity. In this case, we make the appropriate announcements through our Facebook pages. 

    We welcome you to follow us and visit the page prior to making your way to any of the sites: 

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    Why does the lowbanks area keep flooding in the past 2 years

    EL asked 4 months ago
    Hi EL, thanks for your question! Lake Erie's water level has been well above average, and actually hit record levels in 2019. These high water levels combined with a strong South West wind during some storms will increase water levels even further and increased wave action pushes that water onshore.
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    I want to send by email our inquiry asking for a file search on whether a subject property is affected by any regulation order issued by your authority, and if the Property is affected by any regulations or orders, to get full details of any directives, orders or breaches of regulations which you may have on file with respect to the Property or future development thereof. Please provide with an email address, or advise how to deliver our request for a compliance letter and the required fee, a phone # that I can call.

    Wei asked 4 months ago

    Hello Wei, thank you for reaching out with this inquiry.

    We encourage you to check out the NPCA's Watershed Explorer found at https://camaps.maps.arcgis.com/apps/webappviewer/index.html?id=c7555050c8f24a7cbc829395557a7988. Here you can see the location you are inquiring about, and use the layers feature on the left side to see if it is within any regulated areas.

    Once you have had a chance to take a look, you can reach out to one of NPCA's Watershed Planners below, based on the municipality the property is in. Please note that depending on the extent of the scope, a fee may apply. 

    Taran Lennard; tlennard@npca.ca

    • Grimsby
    • Lincoln
    • St. Catharines

    Nikolas Wensing; nwensing@npca.ca

    • West Lincoln
    • Wainfleet 
    • Haldimand
    • Hamilton

    Nicholas Godfrey; ngodfrey@npca.ca

    • Niagara-on-the-Lake
    • Thorold
    • Pelham

    Jessica Abrahamse; jabrahamse@npca.ca

    • Welland
    • Niagara Falls
    • Fort Erie
    • Port Colborne
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    Hi, do we need to book a parking spot if we want to hike to see the falls? Alyssa

    Alyssa asked 4 months ago

    Hi Alyssa, thank you for reaching out. No reservation is required to visit Ball's Falls Conservation Area for passive, day-use recreation such as hiking, birdwatching and nature photography. 

    Please note that there is an admission fee from Monday to Sunday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. of $8/adults and $6/seniors and students. This fee includes access to the parking area as well.

    We welcome you to follow Ball's Falls on social media to stay up to date on possible closures due to capacity, or any changes to the amenities. You can find us at https://www.facebook.com/BallsFallsCA

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    Is park open for hiking today in light of stay at home order ?

    Ken asked 4 months ago

    Hi Ken, our apologies for the delayed response to your inquiry. 

    NPCA Conservation Areas remain open for passive recreation such as hiking, dog-walking on leash, nature photography, non-motorized paddle sports (Binbrook Only) and bird watching.

    Visitors are permitted to enjoy passive recreation with members of their household within the conservation areas. Group gatherings are not permitted.

    Thanks for reaching out to us via this portal. Stay safe!

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    do you have saplings available to plant on large property

    Julie asked 5 months ago

    Hi Julie, thank for your inquiry. 

    We do not currently sell saplings, however we offer a list of providers that we regularly work with who will be able to sell what you are looking for. You can find the list here: https://npca.ca/watershed-health#native-plants-trees.

    Additionally, we welcome you to visit our website to learn more about the NPCA Restoration Grant Program. Perhaps it may be of assistance to your project: https://npca.ca/restoration

    Feel free to reach out if you need anything else! 

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    Are the conservation areas open for hunting ?

    James asked 5 months ago

    Hi James, thank you for reaching out to us via this medium! NPCA Conservation Areas remain open for passive use such as hiking and birdwatching. The specific conservation areas where hunting is permitted also remain open for this activity. 

    We encourage you to visit https://npca.ca/parks-recreation/hunting-application for more information, and review the Hunting Brochure at https://npca.ca/images/uploads/common/HUNTING_BROCHURE_OPPORTUNITIES.pdf for details on specific properties where hunting is allowed, permits that are required, as well as the species per property. 

    We hope this information helps. Please feel free to reach out again should you need more information!

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    Do I need to make a reservation at Canborough Conservation Area, or any of the Niagara Conservation areas to ensure smaller numbers are using the facility? Is there currently a fee charged for use?

    Chris asked 5 months ago

    Hi Chris, thank you for reaching out with this inquiry. NPCA Conservation Areas remain open for passive recreational use like hiking and birdwatching (soon to open for more active recreational activities) and no reservation is required.

    Since the beginning of the pandemic, we have only had capacity issues during the summer, usually on weekends, and only at Ball's Falls, Long Beach, Chippawa, and Binbrook conservation areas. To date, we have not had capacity issues at Canborough Conservation Area. Admission fee applies at the four properties mentioned above ($8/adult, $6/seniors/students) but not at any of the other conservation areas: https://npca.ca/parks-recreation/conservation-areas

    In the case that we do reach capacity and it is no longer safe to allow access to more visitors, we do share this information on our social media channels. We welcome you to follow us at https://www.facebook.com/NPCAOntario!

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    I was just wondering if the conservation areas are still open for hiking in the Niagara Region given the April 16th announcement from Doug Ford. Cheers Jim

    Jimmyboy60 asked 5 months ago

    Hello Jim, thank you for reaching out via this portal. Yes, our conservation areas remain open for passive recreation such as hiking, birdwatching, walking pets on leash, etc.

    All visitors must follow Conservation Area Rules and Regulations (npca.ca/parks) and should only visit a park with members of their immediate household. 

    Stay safe!

Page last updated: 27 May 2021, 12:59