Expect delays on local trails

Construction on the John Hart Power Generating replacement project continues to expand, advancing on four fronts this month

Construction on the John Hart Power Generating replacement project continues to expand, advancing on four fronts this month, BC Hydro has announced.

One of those projects may impact visitors using the trail system entering Elk Falls Provincial Park in the coming week.

In addition to ongoing blasting at the main power generating cavern and its associated tunnels, work on the new intake system at John Hart Dam, and the beginning of construction on the water discharge outlet below the power station, workers this week will be preparing the site for the new surge tower near the current trail system leading into the park and to the popular Elk Falls suspension bridge.

Beginning this week, tree removal will take place along the access road that parallels the existing woodstave penstocks, near the pedestrian bridge that crosses the three penstocks.

“People should expect sporadic delays of about 10 minutes (each) to safely allow the contractor to fall the trees,” BC Hydro spokesperson Stephen Watson wrote in the project update released at the end of August.

Delays are expected to continue for about a week. After the trees are removed, the access road will then be widened to allow for two-way construction traffic to the new surge tank area.

The single surge tank will eventually replace the three existing, 90-metre surge towers, which provide pressure control for each of the three penstocks.

The new tank will serve the same purpose in the new, underground inflow tunnel when the project is completed, tentatively set for fall of 2018.


“Popeye” on the job

Construction crews’ answer to a problematic area of “unconsolidated ground” — or loose rock — in the main access tunnel has been to adopt the New Austrian Tunneling Method (NATM), which has been growing in use throughout Europe in recent years.

At the John Hart project site, this takes the form of installing pipes along the roof of the tunnel and grouting between the pipes before excavating the loose rock below.

Instead of blasting, excavation is done by a CAT 328 excavator with a specialized arm nicknamed the “Popeye Arm” due to its bulky claw and outer extension.


Going to bat for bats

Underground workers were credited with capturing and releasing a bat that had become caught in the mine area recently, but the death of other bats that were caught in the underground ventilation system led to a more proactive solution.

“The contractors have been working with environmental professionals to grate off different areas to prevent bats from entering,” Watson said.

“These adjustments have been successful to date.”

Just Posted

La Familia gets Campbell River’s River City Arts Festival swaying to the music

Campbell River Arts Festival was treated to the sounds of Latin music… Continue reading

Disaster risk reduction course open to Campbell River high school students this fall

SRD protective services coordinator hopes program will eventually become integrated into curriculum

Large sections of Baikie Island Nature Reserve in Campbell River still in need of major attention

Greenways Land Trust has been looking for almost $1 million to address south side of conservancy

VIDEO: Break-in third this year at Indigenous art stores in Campbell River

Awatin Aboriginal Arts robbed for second time in 2019; Wei Wai Kum House of Treasures robbed in June

Rich the Vegan scoots across Canada for the animals

Rich Adams is riding his push scooter across Canada to bring awareness to the dog meat trade in Asia

A year later, ceremony commemorates victims of the Danforth shooting

It’s the one-year anniversary of when a man opened fire along the bustling street before shooting and killing himself

Japanese Canadians call on B.C. to go beyond mere apology for historic racism

The federal government apologized in 1988 for its racism against ‘enemy aliens’

B.C. VIEWS: NDP pushes ahead with Crown forest redistribution

This isn’t the time for a radical Indigenous rights agenda

Two dead in two-vehicle crash between Revelstoke and Golden

RCMP are investigating the cause of the crash

Ottawa fights planned class action against RCMP for bullying, intimidation

The current case is more general, applying to employees, including men, who worked for the RCMP

Alberta judge denies B.C.’s bid to block ‘Turn Off the Taps’ bill

He said the proper venue for the disagreement is Federal Court

Most Read