July 26th, 2021

Feds move ahead with off-stream reservoir to try to reduce flood risk in Calgary

By The Canadian Press on July 20, 2021.

Water bubbles out of a manhole along a street near the Elbow River during flooding in Calgary, Alta., Saturday, June 22, 2013. The federal government has provided the final piece of the puzzle for a controversial reservoir that could protect Calgary from future flooding to move forward. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward

CALGARY – The federal government says an off-stream reservoir that could protect Calgary from future flooding is one step closer to becoming a reality.

Alberta Transportation proposed the $432-million reservoir near the rural community of Springbank, Alta., which is west and upstream of Calgary.

The project, which would divert water from the Elbow River, was proposed after extensive flooding in Calgary in 2013.

It led to five fatalities and caused more than $5 billion in damage across southern Alberta.

Federal Environment Minister Jonathan Wilkinson was joined today by Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi and Alberta Transportation Minister Rajan Sawhney to provide more details at a news conference in Calgary.

The project has the support of the City of Calgary, but faced opposition from some landowners west of the city.

Alberta’s Natural Resources Conservation Board approved the project last month and Wilkinson signed off on a federal environmental assessment earlier this month that determined it was not likely to cause significant adverse effects.

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