Monday, April 13, 2015

City Council To Appeal Colliery Dam 'Order'

Councillor Kipp Outlines Basis To Appeal 'Order'

Nanaimo City Council decided to ask for a stay of the current DSS order and will file an appeal based on the finding that a considerably less expensive option is now being considered to remediate the Colliery Dams.

While this option is being considered by this council it is not a new option, as it is one presented to Council last year by a company called GSI. When the GSI engineer made his presentation to city council he informed council that his firm could supply an armouring solution for both the middle and lower dams for no more than $3 million. He assured the council of the day (under Mayor Ruttan) that his firm could supply an engineered solution that would be accepted by DSS.

For reasons that are not entirely clear, the Technical Committee under the guidance of Mr. Seward did not think the GSI solution would be accepted by the DSS in Victoria. They did seem to favour a more costly option put forward by a company familiar to Golder Engineering which involved mixing the existing earth with concrete and using it to harden the dams.

As it stands now, the option put forward by GSI would satisfy the overtopping safety concerns of both the middle and lower dams for a fraction of the two options currently being ordered by the Dam Safety Section. Councillor Kipp said he would gladly travel to Victoria to present this latest option which would address safety concerns while saving millions of tax dollars.

It can be hoped that city staff will follow council's direction on this motion with greater cooperation than has been witnessed by the Feb. 2 resolution of council put forward by Councillor Yoachim and the more recent motion put forward by Councillor Fuller.



  1. It was good to witness Jim Kipp take control of that meeting and put the two city staff members in their correct position. They made several attempts to enter the debate and influence the councillors but Kipp and in one instance, the Mayor, put them in their place. It's a start. Council must take control back from Swabey and Seward if they are going to have any chance at passing viable legislation that benefits the community. All these two seem bent on is spending huge amounts of taxpayers money.

  2. One question.
    If never in the dam's history has it "over topped" how could this be an issue now? With the recent trend to much less snow pack in the water shed, where is all this extra water coming from? Seems that there is also less rain each year.


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