Nanaimo city council approves Colliery dam review

NANAIMO – New concept for remediation looks at creating drainage course through Harewood Creek.

The City of Nanaimo will investigate an alternative fix for the Colliery dams, with the park preservation society and city staff still at loggerheads over proposed solutions.

Nanaimo city council approved a multi-phased review into the Colliery dams during its committee of the whole meeting Monday, which included looking at a new concept for remediation. The work is estimated to cost between $26,000 and $42,000, bumping up the city’s total expenses for the structures to more than $2.4 million.

According to a city report, the Colliery Dam Park Preservation Society and city staff members continue to disagree on  two solutions currently on the table, including expansion of the spillway. Now the groups are looking at a swale or drainage course to Harewood Creek – a third proposal they are in agreement could be viable to address flood risk if it can work. The review will look into whether the idea is feasible and how much it would cost, with a report expected   in January.

City officials will also look into capacity of the existing spillway and water distribution in an overtopping situation during the three-stage review.

Mayor John Ruttan, who approved moving forward with all of the studies, said the cost is “fairly modest” to ensure the city is on the right path.

“I just want to make sure that as we move along, we’re doing everything we can to come up with a final decision which will be the best that we can come up with,” Ruttan said.

None of the work received unanimous approval by council. Councillors George Anderson, Bill Bestwick, Ted Greves and Diane Brennan opposed the first two reviews, while Bestwick, Bill McKay and Jim Kipp were against investigation into a third remediation option.

“I think it’s time that we stop the spending, accept the information we’ve received,” Bestwick said. “We are asking for more reports that I believe that we already have the information…and if we don’t have that information, we should.”

Coun. Bill McKay said he thinks it should be dealt with by the next council. He also doesn’t want to get too far along in the process, proposing the city should first find out how much water it’s dealing with.

The city aims for a solution by February.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Pedestrian dies in motor vehicle incident along the highway near Nanaimo Airport

Police investigating scene where 37-year-old woman from Nanaimo died

Best of the City: Cannabis store’s customer service impresses

Mood Cannabis Co. finishes second for Best Customer Service in reader survey

Best of the City: Live-streaming in quarantine

Arts and entertainment community resilient in the face of a pandemic

Tour de Rock arrives in Nanaimo, now it’s off to the next station

Cops for Cancer team completes Nanaimo section of Vancouver Island cycle relay

Best of the City: Burger joint is tops in Nanaimo

Newly opened Top Notch Burgers Grill and Lounge voted Best Hamburgers

Tour de Rock arrives in Nanaimo, now it’s off to the next station

Cops for Cancer team completes Nanaimo section of Vancouver Island cycle relay

B.C. VOTES 2020: B.C. Liberals vow to eliminate sales tax for a year

From 7% to zero, then back in at 3% to stimulate economy

Best of the City: This year’s winners

Nanaimo News Bulletin presents full results of our 2020 Best of the City readers’ survey

White Rock’s namesake spray-painted with Black Lives Matter slogan

Vandalism occurred sometime between Friday and Saturday

Trail proposed to connect Cedar and Yellow Point

Regional director says project fits with active transportation goals

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Nanaimo school district sees ‘unprecedented’ increase in distance-ed students

School District 68 hires teachers to support distance learning and transition program pupils

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Mask rules inconsistent

Letter writer says he won’t pay fine for violating COVID-19 Related Measures Act

Most Read