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Category Archives: Repair/Replacement

Riverside Dam Class EA – Part II Order Request – ORA & Partners

The full Capital and Life Cycle Costs of Rebuilding Riverside Dam were not realistically represented in the ESR and could well end up costing the taxpayers more than double what was presented to the public and City Council.  A Rebuilt dam would be considered a new dam, not a repair or expansion of an existing weir, with an assessed High Hazard Potential, and is located within the City of Cambridge in a location that could place multiple residences and businesses at risk in the event of severe flooding or a dam breach.  ORA and Partners submit that this Project goes far beyond the screening process provided by a Schedule B, Class EA.  Consequently, we submit that this is a major project that should fall into a higher level of assessment.

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Riverside Dam Class EA – Update to Preliminary Preferred Alternative – Joint Submission

ORA understands the pressure municipalities are under when communities rally to maintain or rebuild their beloved mill ponds.  However, it is up to all authorities and municipalities to take a leadership role that places public safety and landscape scale ecological integrity above local individual or group interests.

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Save the East Channel of the Eramosa River

Upper Dam diverts flow from East Channel into West Channel of Eramosa River

Upper Dam diverts flow from East Channel into West Channel of Eramosa River

The East Channel is a stretch of the Eramosa River that runs through the village of Eden Mills, between Rockwood and the city of Guelph.  The East Channel was once a pristine river ecosystem; however, for years, it  has been in a state of decline.  Why?  Because a private dam was built without an environmental assessment or permits in the early 1990s, and blocks water from flowing down into the East Channel during the low flow summer months when the river and aquatic life need it the most.  Even though there could be as much as 20 inches of water in the river at the entrance of the East Channel, the Upper Dam blocks the flow completely at those times.  This dam continues to cause significant and alarming environmental harm to the East Channel’s river ecosystem. Continue reading


Decision Notice: Alterations, Improvements & Repairs to Existing Dams, LRIA

Misner Dam, Port Dover

In November of 2015, Ontario Rivers Alliance (ORA) commented on EBR 012-5093,  regarding a Technical Bulletin for the Alterations, Improvements and Repairs of Existing Dams.  You can find our submission on our Blog here.  On March 24, 2016, ORA received a Decision Notice, as well as the approved Technical Bulletin. Continue reading


Springbank Dam Decommissioning

Springbank Dam, Thames River, London, ON

Springbank Dam, Thames River, London, ON

ORA and those listed below are writing in response to the recent settlement of the lawsuit over the Springbank Dam. We request serious consideration of our comments and recommendations regarding the future of the Springbank Dam, and its potential effects on public health and safety, on water quality, climate change, fisheries, and on the natural environment of the Thames River, Lake St Claire and Lake Erie, should it be returned to service.

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EBR 012-5093 – LRIA – Alterations, Improvements and Repairs to Existing Dams Technical Bulletin

Twin Falls GS, Abitibi River

ORA is very pleased to offer our comments on this EBR posting regarding the administration of Section 16 of the Lakes and Rivers Improvement Act (LRIA).  However, to our knowledge, no decision has yet been made on the comments ORA submitted in January of 2014, regarding EBR 012-0562, the Technical Bulletins designed to provide guidance for dam location, operation, maintenance, amendments, reporting and approval under the Lakes and Rivers Improvement Act (LRIA).  Effective LRIA guidelines and policies are essential to regulating dams and maintaining healthy rivers.

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Natural Channels System Initiative – October 7, 2015

Keynote Speaker:  Mariëtte Pushkar, M.Sc., P.Geo.

Natural Channel Design Initiative

 Mariëtte provided an overview of the Natural Channels Initiative, Natural Channel Design Principles, Watercourse Restoration and Dam Removals, and Regulatory Agency Roles and Challenges. She drew on her own experience and that of her colleagues at Ecosystem Recovery during the presentation.

Download (PDF, 9.21MB)


Wanapitei Dam Repair, Wanapitei River

Hydro Control Dam at Outlet Bay, Lake Wanapitei- Sept 10, 2005

Project Name:  Wanapitei Dam Repair
Project Location:  Wanapitei Lake, Sudbury District
Proponent:  MNR
Contact:   J.L. Richard Engineers
Status:  Completed

Rehabilitation of 98 meter of existing 221 meter long structure.  New fish spawning habitat.  New elevated access road.  Completed.  Presented at the Canadian Dam Association Conference.


Bannerman Dam, Onaping Lake – Replacement

Project Name:  Bannerman Control Dam Replacement
Project Location: Ulster Township, Sudbury District, ON
Proponent:  MNR
Contact:  J.L. Richard

There are literally thousands of older control dams in the province that are managed by MNR.  It is great to see them being repaired and upgraded, or even removed if they no longer serve any useful purpose.

The Bannerman is located in Ulster Township (North 46″ 51′ 1″, West 8’1^o 35′ 29^), at the southwest outlet of Onaping Lake. Onaping Lake is.approximately 62.16 km2124 mi2;in size with a watershed drainage area of 1015.28 km'(392 mi’). The lake is used as a reservoir. The drainage route through Bannerman dam is into Bannerman (Moncrieff) Creek and then into the Spanish River.

Bannerman dam is constructed of reinforced concrete. lt is has a single log sluiceway, which may contain up to 16 stop logs (7 doubles, 2 singles). The dam also has and eastand westweir. The east weir is 14.63 m (48 ft) in length; the west weir is 10.36 m (34 ft) in length.

The lake level, throughout the year, is presently maintained by following the cumulative rule curve from the 1993 Upper Spanish River Water Management Plan. The lake level is regulated using both the Bannerman dam and the Onaping dam. Generally under normal conditions, Onaping Lake will remain at full supply level (1306.5 to 1307 ft (398.2-398.4m asl) from Victoria Day weekend in May until Labour Day. Drawdown begins in September after Labour Day and discontinues when the lake obtains a level of 1304 ft (397.5 m asl) at Bannerman dam, or October 15th which ever occurs first.

Onaping Lake contains the Onaping Lake Conservation Reserve and the southern portion of the lake is part of an established canoe route to the Onaping River. There are over 200 cottages, along with a tourist lodge and marina. Fishing pressure is high, which the lake supporting species which include lake trout, walleye, whitefish, northern pike and perch.


McCreight’s Dam Replacement, Bridgeland River

McCreight'sDam-BridgelandRiver

MNR Site No:  2CA5
Project Name: McCreight’s Dam Replacement
Project Location:  Thessalon, ON
Proponent: MNR
Contact: J.L. Richards
Status:  Undergoing replacement of existing two gate dam structure.  New 8m 2-gate structure.  Existing dam used as a coffer dam.

McCreight’s Dam and the Bridgeland River.  Also nearby, McCreight’s Pond, a closed Ontario Ranger camp (2012), a closed Ontario Forestry Prison farm (1973), and an abandoned fire tower. McCreight’s dam is about 6 kilometers (4 miles) north of the village of Little Rapids in the Kirkwood Forest. The original dam dated from the early 1900‘s and was replaced with a new two gate water control dam- -Ontario’s Ministry of Natural Resources is responsible for the structure.


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