Super User

Super User

November 26, 2019

Kestrel Wraggett

Stillwater Creek Slope Stabilization Project

RVCA was contracted by the City of Ottawa to design and implement remediation of an eroded bank of Stillwater Creek adjacent to Nautica Private and Carling Avenue and into the Ottawa River. Erosion of the slope is being caused by fluctuating flow and velocity in the creek and this project will help prevent potential slope failure.

Erosion 1 copy   Erosion 2
East Bank Erosion    East Bank Erosion 

The headwaters of Stillwater Creek begin in the National Capital Commission’s Stoney Swamp. Stoney Swamp is almost 2000 hectares in size, and is a mix of woodland, wetland and regenerating fields. From Stoney Swamp, Stillwater Creek runs through a heavily channelized and impacted area adjacent to Robertson Road. The creek turns into its natural morphology downstream of Robertson Road until the Highway 417 crossing. It then becomes channelized again, as it runs through Wesley Clover Park on Corkstown Road. The creek flows through another large wetland before Moodie Drive crossing, and from there runs parallel between Highway 417 and Corkstown Road until it turns north flowing through residential neighborhoods before emptying into the Ottawa River between the Nepean Sailing Club and Andrew Haydon Park.

The first phase to be completed is on the west bank of the creek in the treed area. The highlighted blue area is the East bank portion of the work to be completed as the second phase.

Map of work area
Map of the Work Area

Further erosion of the bank of Stillwater Creek at Nautica Private could be detrimental to the properties on Nautica Private and to the safety of the residents. 

Rock Toe Berm Construction

RVCA looked into multiple alternatives for the slope stabilization of the banks of Stillwater Creek. RVCA decided on the construction of a rock toe berm to stabilize the east bank of the creek. Once the design was complete, RVCA had it checked by a third-party local geotechnical engineering firm.

The rock toe berm has been designed to make a “key” at the base of the slope to be filled with large “rock protection” sized stones. The slope will then be backfilled at a 1.5:1 (h:v) slope and the large stones will extend above the creeks assumed 100-year flood elevation. The work is expected to protect the properties on Nautica Private from further property damage due to erosion.

Timing

The project will take place from approximately December 22019 – February 28, 2020.

Project Partners

City of Ottawa
Rideau Valley Conservation Authority

Information

Terry K. Davidson, P.Eng.
Director of Engineering & Regulations

  • "Moderate" Low Water Conditions in Rideau Valley Watershed

    June 25, 2020 – This statement is to advise that the low water status in the Rideau River watershed is now at MODERATE severity under the Ontario Low Water Responses Program.

    Although some areas of the watershed have received more rain than others, the watershed has received very little rainfall over the past three months. The average 90-day rainfall measured at climate stations in and around the watershed is below 80 per cent of normal for this time of year. In the past 30 days, average rainfall is well below 50 per cent of normal. Looking ahead, the seven-day weather forecast suggests we will continue to receive minimal precipitation.

    Stream flow values for all waterways are well below normal for this time of year. For example, the measured flows for the Rideau River at Carleton University and the Tay River in Perth are at about 40 percent normal for this time of year. Measured flows for the smaller tributaries such as the Jock River and Kemptville Creek are near 5 percent of normal for this time of year. Field observations around the watershed indicate that ecological conditions are poor with many fragmented streams and numerous reports of algae and/or weed growth.

    Following an early spring freshet this year, Parks Canada are closely monitoring the water levels throughout the Rideau Canal system inside the Rideau Valley watershed. Water levels in the reservoir lakes, located in the upper reaches of the Rideau Valley watershed, are below normal and are expected to decline further with little precipitation in the forecast. Rideau River flows downstream of Big Rideau Lake have been reduced to minimum. Water levels in the Rideau River below Smiths Falls are within navigable ranges but some areas are below average for this time of year.

    Water conservation is encouraged for all watershed residents and businesses, especially those who have permits for taking water from surface or groundwater sources and all residents on private, communal or municipal wells. There is less of a concern for residents of urban Ottawa because the City of Ottawa central drinking water system draws from the Ottawa River. Residents throughout the watershed should be aware of any bans or bylaws that may be in place in their municipalities regarding fires or watering bans.

    Conditions are expected to decline with limited rain in the forecast. Conservation Authority staff continue to monitor conditions and communicate with water managers throughout the watershed. Updates to this message will be issued as conditions warrant. 

    More resources: 


    "Rideau Valley Conservation Authority is a partnership of municipalities within the Rideau Valley watershed created under the Conservation Authorities Act to deliver a range of programs in watershed management and natural resource conservation."

November 18, 2019

Low Water Index

Our low water index has four stages:The RVCA issues water conditions statements to inform residents, municipalities and other stakeholders of changing water levels across the watershed.

low water normal

A green gauge means conditions are normal. No low flow or drought conditions exist.

level 1

This category reflects concern.
80% to 60% of long-term average precipitation for 540 day and/or 90 day precipitation totals and/or 7-day average streamflows less than the 5 year return period low flow.

level 2

This category suggests a potentially serious problem is pending.
60% to 40% of long-term average precipitation for 540, 90 and/or 30 day precipitation totals and/or 7-day average streamflows less than the 10 year return period low flow.

flood watch

This category indicates a failure of the water supply to meet demand.
Less than 40% of long-term average precipitation for 540, 90 and/or 30 day precipitation totals and/or 7-day average streamflows less than the 10 year return period low flow.

Click here for the RVCA's Watershed Conditions Statements.

November 18, 2019

Flood Index

Know the warning system

The RVCA issues water conditions statements to inform residents, municipalities and other stakeholders of changing water levels across the watershed.

flood normal

A green gauge means conditions are normal.

flood safety

A yellow Water Safety Statement means rivers could have high flows, unsafe banks, melting ice or other factors that could be dangerous. However, flooding is not expected.

flood outlook

A yellow Flood Outlook Statement is an early notice of the potential for flooding based on weather forecasts calling for heavy rain, snow melt, high wind or other conditions that could lead to high runoff, cause ice jams, lakeshore flooding or erosion.

flood watch

An orange Flood Watch means flooding is possible in specific watercourses or municipalities. Municipalities, emergency services and individual landowners in flood-prone areas should prepare.

flood warning

A red Flood Warning means flooding is imminent or already occurring in specific watercourses or municipalities.

Click here for the RVCA's Watershed Conditions Statements. Click here for RVCA real-time flows and water levels.

For water levels and flows on the Ottawa River visit the Ottawa River Regulation Planning Board

A flood is coming: What should you do?

If you live in a flood-prone area, the best thing you can do to keep your family and property safe is to make a plan and be prepared to follow it.

Each flood situation is unique, and your emergency plan should account for that – and be ready well in advance.

1. Know the warning system

The RVCA issues water conditions statements to inform residents, municipalities and other stakeholders of changing water levels across the watershed.

 
flood normal
flood safety
flood outlook
flood watch
flood warning
 

Click on a gauge for a larger image

GREEN: A green gauge means conditions are normal.

YELLOW: A yellow gauge can mean two things:

  • A yellow Water Safety Statement means rivers could have high flows, unsafe banks, melting ice or other factors that could be dangerous. However, flooding is not expected.
  • A yellow Flood Outlook Statement is an early notice of the potential for flooding based on weather forecasts calling for heavy rain, snow melt, high wind or other conditions that could lead to high runoff, cause ice jams, lakeshore flooding or erosion.

ORANGE: An orange Flood Watch means flooding is possible in specific watercourses or municipalities. Municipalities, emergency services and individual landowners in flood-prone areas should prepare.

RED: A red Flood Warning means flooding is imminent or already occurring in specific watercourses or municipalities.

2. Be prepared

  • The first step to flood preparedness is knowing your risk level. Call an RVCA Resource Specialist to learn more about your property before flooding occurs.
  • Subscribe to RVCA’s flood messages for regular updates and advanced warning of an impending flood. You can also stay informed through the RVCA website or our Facebook and Twitter pages.
  • Learn about your municipality’s emergency plan: evacuation routes and locations for emergency shelters, as well as their sandbag program if they have one.
  • Plan and practice an evacuation route with your family.
  • Pack an emergency kit that can be accessed easily and carried quickly in case of evacuation; include any necessary medication, blankets, extra clothing and flashlights.
  • Install a battery powered sump pump that can work in a blackout.

Learn more from Environment Canada's detailed flood preparation guide.

Managing flood risks in the Rideau Valley

Conservation authorities have a broad mandate to protect their watersheds, which can include everything from tree planting to regulating development in the floodplain. Not surprisingly, many residents have questions about the role of conservation authorities in their lives, especially when it comes to floods.

Still have questions? Call us at 613-692-3571 or email .

October 30, 2019 —This statement is to advise that the “Minor Low Water” status in the Rideau Valley Watershed is returned to “Normal’ under the Ontario Low Water Response Program.

With several significant rainfall events occurring during the last two weeks, the average 90-day rainfall measured at climate stations in and around the Rideau Valley Watershed is well above 80 per cent of normal for this time of year, which is a key indicator for Minor Low Water status. In the past 30 days, average rainfall has been greater than 100 per cent of normal. Looking ahead, the seven-day weather forecasts suggests we’ll continue to experience more rain, including a large rainfall event tomorrow.

Water levels in some of the smaller rivers and streams across the watershed were well below normal prior the significant rainfall events noted above. These water levels have now begun to increase, and this trend is expected to continue based on the weather forecast.

Conservation Authority staff continue to monitor conditions and communicate with water managers throughout the watershed. Updates to this message will be issued as conditions warrant.

More resources:

Ministry of Environment and Climate Change: https://www.ontario.ca/page/managing-your-water-well-times-water-shortage

Ontario’s Low Water Response program: https://www.ontario.ca/page/low-water-response-program.

RVCA website: www.rvca.ca

Hourly and daily streamflows and water levels: https://www.rvca.ca/watershed-monitoring-reporting/reporting/streamflow-water-levels.

 

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October 22, 2019 – A provincially significant wetland will get a makeover this winter, thanks in part to a $55,000 grant from Wildlife Habitat Canada.

The Hutton Creek Marsh near Lombardy has become a monoculture: choked and overgrown with cattails, only 10 per cent of the marsh is now open water.

Crews will construct three 0.5 acre ponds and 500 metres of channels to help return the wetland to a healthier hemi-marsh state (50 per cent vegetation and 50 per cent open water). 

This will provide new fish passages and areas for spawning and feeding, and will support critical life stages for amphibians, turtles and other wildlife. This healthier water-to-vegetation ratio is also ideal for waterfowl and would support the greatest biodiversity. Creating more open water will also restore local access for paddling, fishing and hunting.

Construction could begin as early as November. Crews will wait until the marsh has frozen to keep impacts to wildlife and water quality low.

This work is Phase 2 of a long-term project to bring the important wetland back to a more natural, productive state. In 2015, the nearby Motts Mills Dam was decommissioned and replaced with an earthen berm. In 2017, the Rideau Valley Conservation Authority (RVCA) lowered local water levels to help staff study the wetland and determine the best way to address the crowded cattails.

A dedicated group of local stakeholders made this project possible, including the RVCA, Ducks Unlimited Canada, Leeds and Grenville Stewardship Council and the United Counties of Leeds and Grenville (UCLG), which owns the property where the work will take place. Support of local residents has also been key to the project’s success.

The project is jointly funded by Wildlife Habitat Canada, Leeds and Grenville Stewardship Council, Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters Zone F, Ducks Unlimited Canada, UCLG, RVCA and the Rideau Valley Conservation Foundation. 

The Wildlife Habitat Canada grant represents more than 40 per cent of the project’s total cost. The primary source of funding for the grant program is from the purchase of the Canadian Wildlife Habitat Conservation Stamp (Canadian Duck Stamp) by waterfowl hunters.

To learn more about how the Rideau Valley Conservation Foundation works to protect wetlands and waterways in the region, or to donate to the cause, visit www.rvcf.ca.

For more information about Motts Mills Conservation Area and the Hutton Marsh, visit https://www.rvca.ca/conservation-areas/no-fee-required/motts-mills-ca.

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Oct. 10, 2019 – We’re updating Foley Mountain Conservation Area’s management plan, and we want your input on the future of Westport’s favourite outdoor oasis.

The updated plan will guide the next 10 years of resource management, habitat enhancement, programming, infrastructure upgrades and other developments at Foley Mountain to best meet the needs and desires of visitors, donors, nearby businesses and other stakeholders.

“We welcome public input, especially from our regular visitors and supporters who spend a lot of time in the park,” said Rebecca Whitman, site supervisor at Foley Mountain. “This is your chance to tell us what you love about Foley, and what you’d like to see improved.”

Foley Mountain Conservation Area is one of 11 conservation areas owned and operated by the Rideau Valley Conservation Authority. Located in Westport, ON overlooking the Upper Rideau Waterway, Foley is famous for its Spy Rock lookout, 10 kilometres of scenic hiking trails and hands-on outdoor education programs. The 337-hectare (833-acre) site is also known for its abundance of wildlife, including the threatened black rat snake which thrives on Foley’s granite ridge that forms part of the UNESCO-designated Frontenac Arch biosphere.

Once completed, the new management plan will provide clear goals and objectives for the site and offer strategies and recommendations to enhance the site for public use and enjoyment over the next decade. 

Take our 10-minute survey here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/FoleyMountain

Leave your email address to be entered in a draw for an annual pass to all RVCA conservation areas, worth $50!

For more information about Foley Mountain, visit www.rvca.ca/conservation-areas/fee-required/foley-mountain-ca.

 

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Contact Us

Address:
Rideau Valley Conservation Authority
3889 Rideau Valley Drive
Manotick, Ontario K4M 1A5

Phone:
613-692-3571, 1-800-267-3504

Email:

Hours:

Regular Hours: Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Member of: conservation ontario