Wabagishik Side Dams A + B Replacement

Design-build project to improve crucial structures for Vale

Wabagishik Side Dams A and B are an important piece of Sudbury’s infrastructure. Located on a topographic low point on a separate bay upstream of a headpond, the dams serve a crucial function for Vale’s Wabagishik Power Plant on Ella Lake.

After numerous reviews found the dams to be in poor condition, a new concrete gravity dam was constructed downstream from their original location. The new dam, founded on bedrock, features more than 6,700 m3 of concrete. To coordinate the construction of this complex and large structure, the original dams were used as cofferdams, which allowed the area to be enclosed and for water to drain during construction.

Detailed engineering and material testing played a critical role in achieving the replacement of critical mining infrastructure. A gravity dam’s structural stability is largely achieved by the weight from the concrete mass. To ensure compressive strength, a total of 191 sets of five concrete cylinders were tested. EXP provided structural, geotechnical and environmental engineering services during construction and final demolition activities.

With the new dams in place, Vale’s Wabagishik Power Plant can continue critical mining operations for the region.



Structural, Environmental, Geotechnical

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