The federal government has announced construction has been completed on the $21.9-million Big Chaudière Dam, located downstream of Lake Nipissing and along the French River.
The Big Chaudière Dam is one of three dams that control the outflow from Lake Nipissing, according to a government news release. They are essential for maintaining its water level and for regulating the flow of water into the 105-kilometre-long French River.
The new Big Chaudière Dam, which consists of a south channel dam and a north channel dam, was completed in October 2016, with a total project cost of $21.9 million. The project began in 2012.
The replacement of the south channel dam began in fall 2014 and was completed in September 2015.
The replacement of the north channel dam began in November 2015 and was completed in October 2016.
During construction, 15 Dokis First Nation labourers, as well as 10 other local workers, were hired for the project. Operation of the Big Chaudière Dam is providing ongoing full-time employment to two members of the Dokis First Nation.
The new dam is expected to help preserve tourism on the French River.