After announcing earlier this week that Parks Canada had approved the final Detailed Impact Assessment (DIA) for the third crossing, the City of Kingston has now released the DIA along with some details of the upcoming construction.
The DIA, which is the final report on environmental considerations for the project, is the conclusion of the City’s work with federal departments and agencies over the last year on the environmental components of the bridge, according to the City’s Third Crossing Team. The DIA has been released along with a full public engagement summary on “what was heard and how comments have been addressed,” the Third Crossing Team said in a press release on Friday, Dec. 6, 2019.
A DIA is the most intensive form of environmental review conducted through Parks Canada’s regulatory process and was the process selected to analyze the environmental considerations, impacts and mitigation strategies for the third crossing project. The City held a 30-day public engagement from Friday, Sept. 13 until Saturday, Oct. 12 of this year to “identify issues, discuss environmental protection measures, and collect public input for incorporation into the DIA.”
According to the Third Crossing Team, during that 30-day public engagement:
- Two open houses were held, one on the east shore and one on the west shore, with a total of 120 residents attending (98 east shore, 22 west shore)
- 1,100 people visited the City’s GetInvolved website with a total of 231 documents being downloaded, and 27 people contributed to the 10 topic forums
- A total of 402 comments from various channels were received: 213 comments were received via email; 33 from the GetInvolved website, 50 comment cards were submitted during the public open houses; 103 verbal comments were recorded; and four others.
The full DIA and public engagement summary can be found on the City’s GetInvolved website here.
Upcoming in-water construction
The Third Crossing Team said residents can expect an increase in construction activities in the coming weeks, including:
- Beginning to build the rock causeway which will provide temporary access in the water. This is the first step in creating access to build the bridge.
- Building the rock causeway will be done within the confines of a turbidity fence. A turbidity fence has already been installed in the water as part of our environmental mitigation which acts to exclude all wildlife from the construction activity and from the areas where rock is put in the water. The turbidity curtain will continue to be tested with a monitoring system, ensuring its effectiveness.
- Constructing five wildlife passages to allow for the safe and active passage of turtles and other wildlife species. These wildlife crossings will allow turtles and other wildlife to move up and down the Cataraqui River across the worksite.
The Third Crossing Team said that construction mitigation measures will be in place in accordance with the conditions described in the approved DIA.
“The team is committed to ensuring that communication with the public is maintained during construction so that community concerns are addressed as quickly as possible,” the press release reads.
The team indicated a number of mitigation measures are being put in place during the construction phase of the project as follows.
The following measures will be used to minimize and address construction noise impacts:
- Installation of permanent noise fences are planned on the east and west shores. Permanent noise fences were designed with higher acoustic attenuation quality than temporary construction barriers to reduce noise impacts to surrounding residents from noise throughout construction.
- Equipment will be equipped with broadband back-up alarm, diminishing noise level significantly with distance compare to regular back-up alarm.
The following requirements and best management practices have been created and will be used to limit dust:
- An Air Quality and Dust Management Plan has been developed which will monitor dust and implement mitigation measures.
- Equipment idling will be limited.
- Dust emissions from materials will be controlled through covers on stockpiles and trucks when practical.
- Water will be used to wet ground surfaces when required.
- Vehicle and equipment speeds will be controlled and monitored.
- The site road and adjacent streets will be cleaned as needed
The Third Crossing Team also indicated that erosion and sediment control plans will be implemented and frequently monitored to protect surface waters, adjacent ecosystems, and wildlife.
“[I am] so pleased that we’ve received approval on the DIA,” said Mayor Bryan Paterson. “City staff worked incredibly hard on this intensive environmental review ensuring residents were informed along the way and that all environmental aspects related to building the bridge were considered. Now, with this final preparatory piece in place, we are ready to move forward and get this bridge built, once and for all!”