Red Deer County proposing project to slow river erosion

County concerned that continued erosion could threaten C & E Trail

Red Deer River’s eroding banks are creeping closer to C & E Trail, prompting Red Deer County to pursue a multi-million dollar fix.

To prevent further damage, the county hopes to armour the riverbank with riprap in a project expected to cost up to $6.5 million. It is hoped the provincial government will come through with $4.8 million. An answer is expected by the end of April.

Alarmed at erosion along the river just south of the Red Deer county offices, the municipality called in geotechnical engineers to assess the area and prepare a report.

“Our report said that obviously we’ve had some landslides in that area and they will continue without mitigation,” said Dave Dittrick, assistant county manager.

“All it would take is one big landslide and we could potentially lose the C & E Trail.”

The trail runs roughly parallel to the river’s escarpment but just south of Fleming Subdivision the road comes within several dozen metres of the edge of the escarpment.

“It’s actually shocking how close the C & E Trail does get to the riverbank. You don’t realize it when you’re driving it.”

After getting the geotechnical report, the county took the information to residents in the nine lots in Fleming subdivision to alert them of the situation.

To help ensure that future development in Fleming subdivision does not put properties at risk, the county has proposed additional regulations for eight of the lots closest to the river.

It is proposed that a 30-metre setback from the river bank be in place for rear yards and a geotechnical report must be created for any new developments. No trees, shrubs or undergrowth can be removed in the district, under the regulations that would go along with a plan to create a direct control district.

Direct control districts are typically created so that county council will have a say before new development is approved.

The county also proposes that no pools, ponds or underground sprinkler systems be permitted and that no garden waste, soil or construction debris be dumped over the slope face.

If a house is demolished or moved the old basement must be filled in so that it does not impact the slope and a geotechnical report to ensure that must be done. New private sewage disposal systems would also require a geotechnical report and county approval.

Dittrick said residents are “not happy but they understand why we’re doing it.

“It’s there to protect them and also to protect them from their neighbours potentially.”

Similar armouring projects have taken place at other locations along the Red Deer River. Years ago, a major a major project saw riprap installed along a bend in the river below Oriole Park West and other erosion control work was done behind homes along the south side of the river just downstream from Heritage Ranch.

A public hearing on the proposed changes has been set for April 23 at Red Deer County Centre.

News tips

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter


Just Posted

Good-bye ice and snow, hello potholes on Red Deer roads

City workers will be spending 20 hours a day on various road repairs

Fog advisory in effect for Red Deer, central Alberta

Heavy fog is affecting visibility for central Alberta drivers Saturday morning. A… Continue reading

Climate change’s impact on outdoor hockey discussed in Red Deer

Red Deer River Watershed Alliance held a forum Friday at the Alberta Sports Hall of Fame

Collision between Red Deer transit bus and truck investigated by RCMP

No one on bus was hurt, truck driver had minor injuries

Eckville man facing about 80 child sexual exploitation charges in court

More than half a million photos and videos found on electronic devices

WATCH: Fashion show highlights Cree designers

The fashion show was part of a Samson Cree Nation conference on MMIW

Montreal priest stabbed during mass leaves hospital; suspect to be charged

MONTREAL — A Catholic priest who was stabbed as he was celebrating… Continue reading

No winning ticket for Friday night’s $35.7 million Lotto Max jackpot

TORONTO — No winning ticket was sold for the $35.7 million jackpot… Continue reading

New report details impact of proposed NS spaceport in event of explosion or fire

HALIFAX — The head of a company proposing to open Canada’s only… Continue reading

Quebec man convicted in Mafia-linked conspiracy deported to Italy

MONTREAL — Michele Torre, a Quebec man convicted in 1996 for his… Continue reading

Republican Karl Rove says conservatives need more than simplistic slogans

OTTAWA — Legendary Republican campaign strategist Karl Rove, known for his no-holds-barred… Continue reading

B.C. hospital’s use as shelter ‘clarion call’ about housing crisis, says mayor

The 10-bed regional hospital that serves the medical needs of 5,000 people… Continue reading

Puddle splashing: A rite of spring

Is there anything more fun than driving through water-filled potholes in the… Continue reading

Special evaluations can help seniors cope with cancer care

Before she could start breast cancer treatment, Nancy Simpson had to walk… Continue reading

Most Read