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Developing barriers to protect equipment and water reservoirs

To protect the Rossdale Treatment Plant in a situation where the North Saskatchewan River overtops its banks, our engineering studies have shown that permanent flood barriers are needed in key locations around the facility. Once constructed, these barriers will limit potential damage to critical equipment and drinking water reservoirs, and ensure that we can resume producing clean drinking water as quickly as possible after a flood.

We compiled and assessed all of the perspectives, suggestions, and comments received during community engagementThe following map shows the a combination of grass-covered embankme​nts and flood walls that will be built around Rossdale to meet technical requirements, reduce the impacts to vegetation and minimize the cost to rate payers.​

  Types of flood barriers​

Two types of flood barriers can be used to protect the water treatment plant in the case of a major flood:​​​​

About grass covered emban​​kments topped with security fencing​​

  • ​Grass-covered embankments are natural looking.

  • They take up a wider amount of space compared with flood walls.​

  • They have specific landscaping requirements that can only accommodate naturalized grasses or sod so the area can be mowed. Large vegetation can prevent proper inspections, create seepage pathways, and encourage burrowing animals.​

About flood walls topped with security fencing

  • Flood walls take up a smaller amount of space compared with grass-covered embankments.​

  • They can incorporate more of the community amenities.
  • Security fencing on top of the flood barriers protects the water reservoirs and treatment plant.​

Content here

With either type of flood barrier (wall or grass-covered embankment) buffer zones are in place that restrict the type of vegetation that can be replanted. The buffer zone is about 5m from the wall or end of the embankment slope. This is to maintain the structural integrity of the barrier. Sod or naturalized grasses are the only option for replanting here. Roots from large vegetation can encourage burrowing animals.​​​​