Sunday, August 04, 2013

Colliery Dams Update Aug. 4, 2013

Update: Progress on Colliery Dams 30-day Consultation

The 30-Day consultation process initiated July 8th to explore all possible options and considerations regarding the future of the Middle and Lower Colliery Dams before awarding a tender to remove both structures has allowed all parties involved in the process to consider new information and agree to a proposed alternative path forward.

The Province’s Dam Safety Section, in conversations with the City of Nanaimo and the Snuneymuxw First Nation, has acknowledged they are open to discussing a mitigation strategy that would allow both dams to remain in place over the winter months while discussions surrounding the future of the dams, including whether or not to remove, rebuild or remediate both structures, continues.

“The acknowledgement by the Province’s Dam Safety Section that they will not be issuing an order this year requiring the City to remove the Middle and Lower Colliery Dams effectively provides all parties engaged in the current discussion about the dams more time to arrive at a mutually agreed to solution concerning their future”, said Nanaimo City Mayor, John Ruttan. “Public safety nevertheless remains critical through the upcoming winter months, therefore the City will work closely with all required stakeholders to build on the public safety awareness campaign and risk monitoring program introduced last fall”.

“We are happy to see this outcome, and glad Snuneymuxw could play a productive role on this matter working in conjunction with the City and the public”, said Snuneymuxw First Nation Chief, Douglas White III. “I thank Mayor Ruttan, his Council, and staff for the positive leadership and diligent effort shown since the re commencement of the 30 day period”.

A recommendation outlining this proposed alternative path forward is scheduled to appear before Council at a special meeting set for August 7th.

Members of the community seeking information about the Colliery Dams, including details regarding public safety, are encouraged to visit the City’s Colliery Dam information webpage at


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