Canada and British Columbia invest in flood mitigation to improve community resilience

News release

Victoria, British Columbia, June 30, 2021—The safety and well-being of people are top priorities of the governments of Canada and British Columbia. Investing in local infrastructure during this extraordinary time helps create jobs, supports local economies, and makes communities more resilient.

Today, Patrick Weiler, Member of Parliament for West Vancouver—Sunshine Coast—Sea-to-Sky Country, on behalf of the Honourable Catherine McKenna, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities, and the Honourable Mike Farnworth, British Columbia’s Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General, announced funding to increase flood resiliency and improve the safety of residents in 12 communities across B.C.

Among the projects approved today, the City of Penticton will construct a deeper and wider channel in Penticton Creek to increase fish habitat, improve bank stability, and ensure the creek can better withstand future flood flows. The project will also remove three deteriorated drop structures and approximately 350 metres of existing concrete lining, replacing them with river rock, riffles, and pools.

In Dawson Creek, the 102nd Avenue crossing will be replaced with a two-lane, 26-meter clear span bridge bordered by a protected pedestrian sidewalk on both sides. In addition, water and storm mains crossing the creek will be replaced and catch basins will be added to divert stormwater from the road surface.  

The Village of Tahsis, which is highly susceptible to flooding, will upgrade three existing flood mitigation works: the North Maquinna Drive Floodwall, the Cook Street Dike, and the Boston Street Internal Drainage System. Once implemented, these upgrades will protect residents and existing assets from future flooding.

The Government of Canada and the Province of British Columbia are investing over $24.5 million in these projects through the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program’s new COVID-19 Community Resilience Stream. Canada is contributing over $19.8 million, and B.C. is contributing over $4.7 million. Federal funding is conditional on fulfilling all requirements related to consultation with Indigenous groups and environmental assessment.

Additional projects will be announced in the coming weeks.

Quotes

“We’ve seen how devastating extreme weather events, floods, land erosion and fast-flowing rivers can be, putting families and whole communities at risk. To help protect communities, and ensure they are more resilient to climate variability and change, we are investing over $19.8 million in critical infrastructure, such as crossings, dikes, berms, reservoirs and more. Canada’s infrastructure plan invests in thousands of projects, creates good jobs across Canada, and builds cleaner, more inclusive communities.”

Patrick Weiler, Member of Parliament for West Vancouver—Sunshine Coast—Sea-to-Sky Country, on behalf of the Honourable Catherine McKenna, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities 

“This investment will help communities better face future flood risks by improving the infrastructure that protects them, and I’m pleased we’ve been able to work with our federal partners on this program. Resiliency for all of B.C. means supporting the vital work that better prepares us for emergencies, and these funds will give communities more tools to become stronger in the face of risk.”

The Honourable Mike Farnworth, British Columbia’s Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General

Quick facts

  • Through the Investing in Canada infrastructure plan, the federal government is investing more than $180 billion over 12 years in public transit projects, green infrastructure, social infrastructure, trade and transportation routes, and Canada’s rural and northern communities.

  • Across B.C., the Government of Canada has invested more than $4.3 billion in over 550 infrastructure projects under the Investing in Canada plan.

  • To support Canadians and communities during the COVID-19 pandemic, a COVID-19 Resilience Stream has been added to the over $33-billion Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program to help fund pandemic-resilient infrastructure. Existing program streams have also been adapted to include more eligible project categories.

  • Under the COVID-19 Resilience Stream, the federal cost share for public infrastructure projects is up to 80% in the provinces, and up to 100% in the territories and for projects intended for Indigenous communities.

  • For projects that are federally funded at 80%, British Columbia contributed 20% to provide a total cost share of 100%.

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Contacts

Michelle Johnston
Director of Communications
Office of the Minister of Infrastructure and Communities
613-298-7386
Michelle.Johnston@infc.gc.ca

Jordan Turner
Director of Communications
Emergency Management BC
236-478-0210
Jordan.Turner@gov.bc.ca

Media Relations
Infrastructure Canada
613-960-9251
Toll free: 1-877-250-7154
Email: media@infc.gc.ca
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