Hatzic Lake gets new pumps

The public is invited to tour station this Saturday

Hatzic Lake’s new pump station will better protect property, land, and fish inside the dike.

The station is located at the end of Hatzic slough and is part of a drainage plan developed by the Dewdney Area Improvement District (DAID) eight years ago.

DAID is responsible for maintaining the dikes along the Fraser River from Dewdney Trunk Road and Lougheed Highway in Hatzic to Bell Road in Dewdney. Hatzic Lake water levels are affected by the Fraser River and water and debris coming off of local mountains and water sheds.

The building is about seven by nine metres and starts at three metres below sea level, explained project manager Larry Wiens.

It’s a floating pump station, and will move slightly in an earthquake, but is seismically stable, Wiens added.

He explained the dike was built on top of the old river bed and heavy steel pilings were driven 50 feet into the ground for the new facility. All the material inside was cleaned out before the floor was poured and the pump house built.

There are three pumps inside with a capacity of 14,000 litres per second. The fish-friendly pumps will also allow fish up to 20 inches in length access the Fraser River from Hatzic Lake and make their way to the ocean.

Fish mortality will be reduced by 50 per cent, said Wiens.

The flood gates will still be operational, and the old pumping station, which has a capacity of 8,000 litres per second, will be used as a back-up.

The flood gates open and close depending on the level of the river.

The old pump station was built a year after the devastating 1948 flood and was only supposed to be a temporary solution to drain the then-flooded valley, according to Wiens.

The $4-million facility was funded equally by the federal and provincial governments and affected taxpayers.

The public is invited to tour the new pump station May 3. Opening ceremonies will begin at 10 a.m. A free shuttle bus will be available to take visitors from the parking area at the foot of Buker Street to the new facility.

For more information visit www.daid.ca.