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Another dam completed and work progresses on third and final dam

Rock, concrete, steel, rebar and lots of people power – that’s some of the ingredients to create the many pieces that will fit perfectly together to finalize the Muskrat Falls hydroelectric generating facility. The powerhouse, spillway and three dams including the North Spur dam, North dam and South dam, are the primary components that span the lower Churchill River to create the reservoir – the source of power for the plant.

This year, the South dam and North Spur dams were completed and significant work progressed on the North dam. And with more than 100,000 cubic metres of concrete placed for the North dam this year, it reached an elevation of 15.69 metres. That’s about 40% of the required concrete placed.

“The completion of the South and North Spur dams and the significant progress on the North dam is the result of the dedication and hard work by our project team members, as well as our contractors, unions and all those working on the project,” said Scott O’Brien, Project Manager-Muskrat Falls Generation. “We’ve achieved these milestones with a focus on safety, and work quality, while respecting and showing concern for our environment.”  

Fast Facts

The North dam spans the lower Churchill River from the spillway on the south to the North Spur. Upon completion, this dam will be in excess of 400 m long with a maximum elevation of about 39.3 m, making it one of the largest roller compact concrete dams in Canada.

Click on the image below to view construction of the North dam in 2017 captured in a time-lapse video. 

The South dam closes the south part of the reservoir between the south bank and the powerhouse and will hold water in the reservoir. It is a rock-fill embankment dam about 250 m long and an elevation of 46.3 m. Construction was completed in September 2017 by Barnard Pennecon Limited Partnership.

The North Spur dam is a natural dam on the Churchill River that has been reinforced and stabilized. Gilbert Newfoundland and Labrador Construction Ltd completed the North Spur dam in August 2017.

Want to learn more about these dams? Click here.