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Chambly Canal National Historic Site

Info-Work

Parks Canada completes a first phase of work on the Fryer Dam

Chambly (Quebec) December 19, 2016 - Parks Canada has successfully completed the demolition of the Fryer Dam’s concrete apron; the work, which began in mid-October, took less time than expected! The contractor’s efficient methods meant that work was done quickly while the environment was protected.

The Fryer Dam before the demolition of its concrete apron...
The Fryer Dam before the demolition of its concrete apron...
© Parks Canada
The Fryer Dam after the demolition of its concrete apron...
...and after
© Parks Canada

The demolition of the concrete apron was carried out using a hydraulic excavator equipped with a hoe hammer. An average of two spans were removed per day, for a total of 30 spans. A barge was used to move machinery and workers on the Richelieu River.

Demolition was carried out using a hydraulic excavator on a barge.
Demolition was carried out using a hydraulic excavator on a barge.
© Parks Canada

To ensure that the work area remained sealed and that no debris ended up in the river, the barge was fitted with steel plates and protective netting. Once recovered, the debris was placed in a dumpster on the barge using a mini excavator.

The dam’s concrete apron showed significant signs of degradation, posing a risk of falling concrete fragments. This work ensured the public’s safety while protecting the Richelieu River and its surroundings.


Some of the Fryer Dam’s piers have deteriorated and will be repaired in the fall of 2017.
Some of the Fryer Dam’s piers have deteriorated and will be repaired in the fall of 2017.
© Parks Canada

Parks Canada is currently planning the next stage of the work, which should begin in the fall of 2017 and include the repair of piers considered a priority. More details will be provided in the coming months.

Parks Canada is investing more than $50 million in the Chambly Canal National Historic Site over five years. This major investment will make it possible to upgrade numerous structural elements of the waterway, improve the user experience for the 200,000-plus people who visit the site each year, and protect this exceptional heritage site for current and future generations to enjoy.


Work currently in progress

Rehabilitation of the gabions at the Chambly Canal National Historic Site

Temporary closure and deviation of sections of the Chambly Canal’s path

Gabions and the Chambly Canal
Gabions are retaining structures used to control bank erosion
© Parks Canada

Chambly (Quebec), November 9, 2016 – Work will be carried out along the Chambly Canal over the coming weeks until the end of December 2016, to rehabilitate the gabions that protect the banks from eroding, ensuring the longevity of these structures.

Gabions are metal cages filled with rocks that are used to stabilize the banks of the Chambly Canal. They are flexible, permeable structures that protect parts of the shoreline from collapsing due to erosion. Gabions protect the Chambly Canal’s banks along a stretch of approximately 5 km.

The work will be carried out in stages between Locks No. 3 and No. 8 and will require the consecutive closure of sections of the Chambly Canal’s path. While the work is underway, users are asked to follow the clearly marked detours and to respect the temporary signage.

Parks Canada is investing more than $50 million over five years in the Chambly Canal National Historic Site. This major investment is part of Parks Canada’s $3 billion infrastructure investment to support national parks, national historic site and national marine conservation areas. The funding will make it possible to upgrade numerous structural elements of the waterway, improve the experience for the 200,000-plus people who visit the site each year, and protect this exceptional heritage site for current and future generations to enjoy.


Work on Weirs nos. 4 and 5, Chambly Canal National Historic Site
Weir n° 4 at the Chambly Canal
Weir n° 4 at the Chambly Canal
© Parks Canada

Chambly (Quebec), October 11, 2016 – Work will be carried out at the Chambly Canal National Historic Site on Weir No. 4, located between Bridge No. 7 and Fryer Island in Carignan, and Weir No. 5, located near Bridge No. 10 in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu.

The work will begin in mid-October 2016 and should be completed by the end of December 2016. It will include repairs to the concrete and replacement of mechanisms and gates. About ten street lamps will also be added near Weir No. 4 to secure the access for its operation.

These weirs are a unique glimpse into the history of the Chambly Canal and are also remarkable examples of the technology used in historic canals. The mechanisms being replaced, which maintain a heritage quality, will be put on display by Parks Canada and information panels will allow the public to learn more about these structures and the treasured cultural heritage of the Chambly Canal.

There are no plans for closing the path to pedestrians or cyclists, as the work will have only minor and periodic impacts. Work zones will be clearly identified and secured. Parks Canada asks the public to exercise patience and caution, in addition to respecting the temporary signage.


Work on the Fryer Dam

The Fryer Dam from yesterday...

The Fryer Island Dam is built on 30 concrete piers The Fryer Island Dam is built on 30 concrete piers.
© Parks Canada

Chambly, Quebec, October 3, 2016 - The “Fryer Island Dam” has marked the landscape of Carignan and of Richelieu since its construction in 1938. This imposing 347-metre long structure, which spans the Richelieu River from east to west, was designed as part of an ambitious project to make the Richelieu River the main waterway linking the United States and Canada. A number of factors would put an end to the project, including the outbreak of the Second World War in 1939 and the decision a few years later to canalize the St. Lawrence River. The Fryer Dam could never fulfill its function.

...to today.

3D photographic modelling obtained using images captured by a drone 3D photographic modelling obtained using images captured by a drone.
© Parks Canada

Today, the Fryer Dam remains a witness to the evolution of navigation and the engineering of canals in the first half of the 20th century. It is now under the responsibility of Parks Canada, which has carried out, in the summer of 2016, inspections on all the components of the dam. A drone was used to capture aerial images to create a 3D photographic modelling of the existing structure. By revealing its changes in shape, colour and texture, the 3D photographic modelling allows a precise analysis of the condition of the dam. Divers also conducted a visual inspection of the submerged parts of the piers and abutments of the dam and their aquatic environment. With the flow of water being elevated in this area, a boat equipped with 3D sonar that conducted underwater surveys was deployed to complete the work of the divers.

The work carried out this fall

The dam’s concrete apron shows significant signs of deterioration The dam’s concrete apron shows significant signs of deterioration.
© Parks Canada

Work will be conducted this fall on the dam’s concrete apron, which shows significant signs of deterioration. Parks Canada will proceed with the demolition of the apron to ensure the safety of the public and protection of the environment. The work should extend until the spring of 2017. No closing of the Chambly Canal’s path is planned during this period, but minor restrictions may be necessary. Details about these restrictions will be communicated shortly.