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Posted on: March 22, 2021

Jura Creek Flood Mitigation project – Public Information Session

The MD of Bighorn will be hosting a public information session for the Jura Creek flood mitigation project on Tuesday March 30, 2021 from 2-4pm and 6:30-8:30pm. 

The Jura Creek debris-flood mitigation project, located upstream of Highway 1A, is designed to protect the hamlet of Exshaw and Highway 1A from debris flood events from the 300 to 1000 year recurrence interval. 

Representatives from Golder Associates Ltd. and the MD of Bighorn will be available to answer questions.

With the current restrictions on public gatherings, a virtual event has been planned. To join and participate in the information session please follow this link

Public Information Session  

Preliminary Drawings

 FAQ’s:

When will the Jura Creek project start? Construction is tentatively planned to start in July, 2021 subject to pending regulatory approvals.

How much will the Jura Creek project cost? ~$5 million.

Who is paying for the project? The project is being paid for by federal grants (~40%), provincial grants (~50%) and the MD of Bighorn (10%).

The drawing provided is the preliminary design. When will the final detailed design drawings be available? The final detailed design drawings will be available prior to release of the tender documents for construction of the project. It is anticipated that tendering of the project will occur in May, 2021. The final design drawings will be posted on the MD of Bighorn website.

Where can I find the design report? The design report will be prepared after the detailed design drawings are completed and submitted to the MD of Bighorn on or before May 31, 2021. The design report will be posted on the MD of Bighorn website after the report has been reviewed and approved by the MD of Bighorn. 

What has been done to assess the risks of increasing groundwater impacts from the Jura Creek project to the residents of east Exshaw? Three (3) vibrating wire piezometers will be installed in early April, 2021 to measure and record the groundwater elevations before and after the construction of the Jura Creek debris-flood mitigation project.

In addition, Golder notes the following:

  • There is the possibility of existing groundwater flow from the Jura Creek alluvial fan down to the lowland area between Jura Creek and east Exshaw. The flood mitigations are not expected to increase groundwater flow to the lowland area.
  • Residences in east Exshaw are situated about 1 to 2 meters above the lowest levels of the lowland area. 
  • The purpose of this project is to reduce the risk of debris flooding, which is a greater hazard compared to groundwater impacts.
  • A significant risk of flooding from surface water or rise in groundwater table at the lowland area, from other environmental factors such as rainfall, snowmelt runoff, infiltration from the local drainage area and the Bow River water levels, will remain once this project is completed. This project does not address runoff from the local drainage area.

Why was the Jura Creek project not constructed sooner? The MD of Bighorn did not previously have sufficient funding to complete the Jura Creek project. The remaining funding was secured in November, 2020.

Could east Exshaw still be flooded by Jura Creek once this project has been completed? It is possible that a flood event larger than the design event could overwhelm the planned mitigations and result in flooding in east Exshaw. 

The existing pipe crossings through the CP embankment have the capacity to pass an approximate flow of 30 m3/s (25-year event). Potential flooding of east Exshaw can occur prior to completion of the debris flood mitigations downstream of Highway 1A by Alberta Transportation. 

When will flood mitigations be installed downstream of Highway 1A? Alberta Transportation is planning to install the required pipes through the CP Railway embankment to be able to pass the design event debris flood. The approval of the project is dependent on successful negotiations with stakeholders including CP Rail and the Exshaw Community Association and obtaining the required regulatory approvals.

Will recreational access to Jura Creek be affected? Recreational access within the construction area will not be allowed during construction. Construction is expected to start in July and finish in October of 2021. Access to the Jura Creek canyon from the trailhead parking lot will not be affected by this project.

 

Contact:

Doug Fulford

Director of Disaster Recovery

403-493-0314

doug.fulford@mdbighorn.ca

 

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