The District of Squamish (DOS) received a significant boost to its flood prevention efforts on July 3.
The DOS announced that it had successfully applied for a grant of nearly $4.05 million through the federal government’s Investing in Canada Plan’s Rural and Northern Communities Infrastructure Stream.
The funds will go toward constructing 200 metres sea dike in Xwu’nekw Park along the Mamquam Blind Channel to “upgrade the shoreline and improve coastal flood protection for downtown Squamish,” according to a DOS release.
"This funding is critical to enable us to complete shoreline upgrades and diking infrastructure that will address current anticipated sea level rise, and offer flood protection to all of Downtown Squamish,” Mayor Karen Elliott said in the release.
The dike will be built to account for a projected one-metre sea level rise by 2100. The dike’s design, which the District is planning with input from marine user groups, environmental organizations and Squamish Nation, will have features supporting marine habitat.
The DOS has two preliminary designs it is currently considering: one that maintains more usable park space but requires more fill and habitat compensation, and one that maintains less space but also does not need as much fill or habitat compensation.
Residents can look at the designs and provide feedback to the DOS here.
The survey will be open until the end of day on July 14.
The federal plan received $44.5 million in federal funding, $19.2 million from the provincial government and more than $23 million from applicants and is being dispersed in two streams: the RNIS and the Community, Culture and Recreation Infrastructure Stream (CCRIS).
Another Squamish project that received RNIS funding is the Jack Webster Bridge over Culliton Creek in the Upper Paradise Valley. A new two-lane bridge will be constructed and will incorporate pedestrian and trail-use components.
Several other Sea to Sky projects received funding through the CCRIS, including the Squamish Lil’wat Cultural Centre in Whistler, which is revitalizing its building through installing an HVAC system, upgrading sound, light and surveillance equipment, refurbishing its floors and exterior, and updating storyboard panels to reflect changes in written Squamish and Lil’wat languages.