Due to increasing flood risk in the Marten Beach area, Council is working with a team of financial, environmental, engineering and social analyst specialists to undertake an extensive study on the Marten Beach area regarding flood risk mitigation strategies.
FLOOD ZONE SURVEYS
As a preliminary step in the evaluation of a proposed flood mitigation strategy, Meridian Surveys will be conducting topographic (terrain) and bathymetric (underwater) surveys of the project area.
In the days when the MD was still an improvement district, the Hamlet of Marten Beach was developed on a hundred-year floodplain under the purview of the Government of Alberta. Within the last three decades, this little community on the northern shore of Lesser Slave Lake has experienced two separate “hundred-year” rainfall events (in addition to three “twenty-year” rainfalls). These events have proven costly and traumatic to Marten Beach residents, and pose an ongoing concern to the MD and Province.
Mitigation Methods and Models
In 2020, the MD engaged Aecon Group to provide a 1:100-year flood solution. Their proposal involved retaining walls and berms to protect the community — at a cost of roughly $7 million. In parallel to this consulting work, Alberta Environment conducted a flood mapping study of Marten Beach; the outcome of which was a computer model based on regional topography that simulates how water collects and flows along the tributaries and river channel. This model helps define the official provincial values for the likelihood and extent of flooding.
On June 24, 2022, engineering firm Nichols Applied Management hosted an open house in Marten Beach where they presented five potential flood mitigation strategies. Upon review of the strategies presented, combined with consideration of community input, MD Council directed administration to evaluate the option of narrowing the entire channel. The next step involves conducting topographic (terrain) and bathymetric (underwater) surveys of the project area. This work is slated for mid-October 2022.
The data acquired during these surveys will help inform future Council decisions and possible design. The survey results will also provide valuable reference material for any grant funding applications that may be undertaken.
An Ongoing Commitment
The MD remains committed to reducing the flood disaster risk in Marten Beach. All relevant Marten Beach flood mitigation data and news updates will be posted to this section of the MD website.
The MD remains committed to reducing the flood disaster risk in Marten Beach. The following steps have been directed by Council:
- Move to proceed with On-site Fall Survey investigation of Option 5 as presented in the Associated Engineering Technical Memo dated September 6, 2022, favouring Option 5C as the primary option of the Marten Beach Flood Disaster Risk Mitigation Strategy and further seek financial funding and impact option clarification from Nichols Applied Management at the next Regular Meeting of Council; and
- Move to direct Administration to provide a draft set of Flood Mitigation development criteria and policy LUB amendments for the Marten Beach area, for consideration of approval at the next Committee of the Whole meeting, utilizing the 200-year flooding events forecast as the basic criteria for the area