NRCB Application No. 1601
On August 19, 2016, the Town of Canmore (the Town) filed its formal application to the NRCB (the Board) to construct a debris flood retention structure and access road on Cougar Creek, approximately 2 kilometres northwest of the Trans-Canada Highway. The project location (14-34-24-10 W5M) is at the site of an existing debris net.
The application describes the proposed project as a 29.85 metre high structure that would span a bedrock confined channel. It would comprise a rock and earth filled embankment, a reinforced concrete central sealing wall, and an open outflow with a throttle and debris rake. During normal weather conditions, water and sediment would flow unimpeded through the structure. The project description is set out in more detail in the environmental impact assessment (EIA), which forms part of the town’s application to the Board (NRCB Application #1601). The Town submitted the EIA to Alberta Environment and Parks in July 2016. The Town also filed an application with Environment and Parks under the Water Act (File No. 00384210).
The NRCB and Alberta Environment and Parks issued a joint notice of filing on September 6, 2016.
Following the review of the EIA and the applications, supplemental information was requested from the Town on three occasions: December 2016, October 2017, and March 2018. The Town provided the requested information in its responses filed on June 9, 2017, December 12, 2017, and March 20, 2018. The EIA and the application were deemed complete on March 23, 2018.
The NRCB issued notice of the application on April 11, 2018 to invite written submissions from those who may have concerns about or objections to the project.
Revised Application 2019
On October 23, 2019, the NRCB issued Board Decision Addendum NR 2018-01 finding the Town of Canmore’s revised proposal for a Cougar Creek debris flood retention structure to be in the public interest.
Public interest decisions issued by the Board are forwarded to Cabinet to request the Lieutenant Governor in Council to issue an order in council. On receipt of authorization on February 12, 2020, the NRCB issued its Approval NR 2018-01 to the Town of Canmore.
The NRCB originally issued a decision on November 15, 2018, determining that the Town’s application was in the public interest. However, on January 9, 2019, prior to consideration by the Lieutenant Governor in Council, the Town advised that it was revising the project’s design to shorten the construction schedule and reduce costs. On February 28, 2019, the NRCB suspended its decision and requested that the Town file a revised application. The Town filed its revised application on September 6, 2019, describing impacts on social, economic, and environmental indicators stemming from design changes to the dam structure, the spillway, and the access road. The NRCB has now reviewed the revised application and remains satisfied that the project is in the public interest having regard for the social, economic, and environmental effects of the project.
The Board is a quasi-judicial entity and is responsible under provincial legislation for determining the public interest of proposed developments. Its public interest decisions are based on its independent assessment of the facts.
To obtain additional information about the project, or copies of the EIA, applications, or supplemental information, contact:
Felix Camire, E.I.T., Project Manager
Town of Canmore
Canmore, Alberta T1W 3K1
The application and EIA are available online: https://canmore.ca/projects/mountain-creek-hazard-mitigation
Or, by appointment, they may be viewed at the following locations:
Town Hall, Canmore Civic Center
903 – 7 Avenue, Canmore
Natural Resources Conservation Board
250 – 5 Street SW
Calgary, Alberta T2P 0R4
Toll-free in Alberta by first dialing 310-0000
Information about the NRCB’s review process can be found at the following links: