Project description

The proposed Lake Manitoba and Lake St. Martin outlet channels project consists of four components:

  • Lake Manitoba outlet channel with a design capacity of 7,500 cfs (212 cms) at a water level of 814.0 feet (23.1 metres) above sea level (asl)
  • Lake St. Martin outlet channel with a design capacity of 11,500 cfs (326 cms) at a water level of 801.0 feet (22.7 metres) asl
  • Access road to allow for construction, operation, and maintenance of the Lake St. Martin outlet channel
  • 24 kV transmission line to allow for operation of the control structure of the Lake St. Martin outlet channel

Map showing the location of the four project components

Map showing the location of the four project components

 


Lake Manitoba outlet channel

The 7,500 cfs (212 cms) channel will result in a significantly greater ability to maintain Lake Manitoba water levels below the flood stage. Project details include:

  • An approximate 23 km channel connecting Watchorn Bay on Lake Manitoba to Birch Bay on Lake St. Martin
  • Situated on privately held land and Crown leased land
  • Involves a water control structure and several bridges

These are the estimated project components. The project may be modified as design and construction proceed.

Map showing the location of the

Map showing the location of the Lake Manitoba outlet channel




Lake St. Martin outlet channel

The channel will require relocation of the existing channel inlet and will consist of a new channel so water can drain from Lake St. Martin to Lake Winnipeg. The existing Lake St.Martin Emergency Channel (constructed in 2011) will be repurposed to act as a recharge channel for the wetland complex and provide future environmental benefits.

Project details include:

  • Designed at a capacity of 11,500 cfs (326 cms)
  • Approximately 23 km in length
  • Water control structure and bridge
  • Situated on unoccupied Crown land

These are the estimated project components. The project may be modified as design and construction proceed.

Map showing the location of the Lake St. Martin outlet channel


Project funding

The Government of Canada has committed to cost sharing this project through the Building Canada Fund’s National Infrastructure Component.


Project timeline

In December 2012, consultants undertook a comprehensive study on behalf of the Manitoba government to identify and assess options to reduce flood risk for areas along Lake Manitoba and Lake St. Martin.

A public open house took place on September 18, 2014 to discuss the study. Phase 1 conceptual review of alternatives and Phase 2 conceptual design for the outlet channels were completed between 2014 and 2016.

The consultants’ preliminary design was completed in January 2016. Letters for Crown-Aboriginal consultations were sent out to 20 communities in the fall of 2016.

Construction on the access road is scheduled to begin in 2017.

Project Timeline


Project challenges

  • Lake Manitoba and Lake St. Martin outlet channels project is the largest construction project undertaken by the province since the Floodway improvements a decade ago. Design and construction will be undertaken over a multi-year timeframe.
  • The new water control infrastructure must be designed to work in concert with Manitoba’s existing network of flood protection infrastructure, operating as a system to provide flood protection.