Whitemud Creek Erosion and Landslide Repair at 54 Avenue
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Due to ongoing site stability concerns, the section of trail in Whitemud Creek Ravine adjacent to 54 Avenue is being repaired.
Project Update - January 2023
Construction is now underway. The trail will remain closed during the duration of construction, but the Project Team will explore the possibility of reopening a section of the trail once it is safe to do so. That is expected to be in the latter winter months of 2023. A partial closure will be required again in the spring for naturalization work.
About the project
This trail provides the only access to the west side of Whitemud Creek in this area of the ravine and is used extensively by recreational users, so it must be permanently repaired to maintain the connectivity of the Whitemud Creek Ravine trail system. Due to limited trail widths and unsafe conditions, the trail has been closed to public use since spring 2020. The repair will create safe, long-term access to the Whitemud Creek Ravine and the overall trail system.
Construction will include the removal of compromised bank material and vegetation. The banks will then be reconstructed and protected with riprap armouring. A robust naturalization plan has been developed and will be implemented once the stabilization work is complete.
Items in scope for this project include:
Compromised and slumped material removal
Imported material installation for bank remediation
Bank armouring through rip rap boulders
Rock and upland naturalization planting
Tree removals are necessary for long-term stabilization of the banks adjacent to this section of trail. A robust naturalization, or re-planting, plan has been developed and will be implemented once the stabilization work is complete.
The naturalization plan will enhance and improve the existing ravine ecosystem and native species including balsam poplar, white spruce, white birch, dogwood, sandbar willow, silverberry and willow will be planted.
Substantial completion is anticipated for March 2023, allowing the trail to be reopened to the public
Naturalization work will begin in the spring of 2023
Construction is anticipated to begin in October 2022
Public trail closure continues
In the spring of 2020, considerable additional erosion occurred causing a large portion of the bank to collapse which resulted in significant loss of the trail width at this location. The trail was closed, coinciding with the closure for the repairs to the existing utility trestle approximately 150m north (downstream) of the site. More extensive slope instability was also re-initiated at the site following periods of prolonged and heavy precipitation. Together, these hazards have damaged a substantial lateral extent of the affected trail.
2019 & Prior
Dating back to 2012, this site has been impacted by shallow instability or slumping, causing trail deformation and cracking. These earlier trail impacts were adequately managed through regrading and maintenance efforts. In 2019, some minor lateral creek erosion was noted at this location as evidenced by a few trees that had been undermined due to the effects of lateral creek erosion. The trail was not damaged at that time and remained open to public use.
Whitemud Creek Erosion and Landslide Repair at 54 Ave (April 2021, looking west)
Whitemud Creek Erosion and Landslide Repair at 54 Ave (August 2021 looking south)
Whitemud Creek Erosion and Landslide Repair at 54 Ave (April 2021, looking north)
All environmental approvals are now in place and construction began in October 2022. The trail will remain closed during the duration of the construction, but the Project Team will explore the possibility of reopening a section of the trail once substantial completion is achieved. That is expected to be early 2023. A partial closure will be required again in the spring for naturalization work.