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Red River Floodway Expansion Project Completed Under Budget

Eight communities in Manitoba to benefit from additional flood related projects thanks to federal-provincial funding

March 18, 2014 – Winnipeg, Manitoba

Just as spring is around the corner, representatives from the federal and provincial governments gathered in Winnipeg today to learn more about the efficiency of the recently completed Red River Floodway Expansion Project. At $627 million, this major infrastructure project was completed $38 million under budget. This savings is good news for eight communities in Manitoba because the surplus will be invested in two additional flood protection projects.

The Red River Floodway Expansion Project improves flood protection for the residents of Winnipeg, West St. Paul and East St. Paul from a 1-in-90 to a 1-in-700 year flood. The floodway operates by diverting a portion of the Red River floodwaters around Winnipeg through the floodway channel immediately south of Winnipeg back to the Red River near Lockport. The capacity of that channel was increased from 1,700 cubic metres of water per second to 4,000 cubic metres. The project also included the replacement of eight highway and railway bridges, the expansion of the Outlet Control Structure, improvements to the Inlet Control Structure, as well as the expansion of the West Dike and utility modifications.

One of the new projects slated to benefit from the surplus funding involves a $14.85-million investment to convert temporary community flood protection infrastructure into permanent infrastructure in seven communities across Manitoba. The second project involves a $27-million investment to enhance existing flood protection infrastructure in the City of Brandon. Further details on both of these projects will be confirmed in the coming months and shared with the public.

Quick Facts

  • The original budget for the Red River Floodway Expansion Project was $665 million and was cost-shared equally by the Government of Canada and the Province of Manitoba. Based on final project costs, the overall project budget is now estimated to be $627 million or
    $38 million below budget. Federal funding for this project came from the Canada Strategic Infrastructure Fund and the Building Canada Fund – Major Infrastructure Component.
  • The Government of Canada and the Province of Manitoba will each contribute $19 million to the two new flood mitigation projects. Municipal funding in the amount of $3.85 million will cover the remainder of the total costs. The federal funding for these new projects will come from the Building Canada Fund – Major Infrastructure Component.
  • Construction on the Red River Floodway Expansion Project officially began on September 23, 2005. In the spring of 2009, the floodway project achieved its main objective of providing 1-in-700 year flood protection, providing greater flood protection for an additional 450,000 Manitobans, over 140,000 homes, over 8,000 businesses, and preventing more than
    $12 billion in damages during a major flood. Since that time, the Manitoba Floodway Authority (MFA) has been working on the final stages of the project.
  • Approximately 3,600 workers and over 170 companies worked on the project.


“Our government is proud to have contributed to the completion of the Red River Floodway expansion. I am very pleased that the cost savings realized through this project will be directed to vital flood-related projects in eight other communities throughout Manitoba that have been threatened by flooding in the past. We will continue to deliver on our commitment to provide safe, modern infrastructure for all Canadians as we focus on creating jobs, promoting growth, and building strong, prosperous communities in Manitoba, and across Canada.”

The Honourable Shelly Glover

Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages

“Building on the legacy of Duff Roblin, the floodway expansion project has been one of the most critical public infrastructure projects in the province’s history. This investment provides
1-in-700-year protection and ensures that Winnipeg is better prepared for flooding long in to the future. By completing the project under budget, we can now invest in other flood protection projects in Brandon and other communities throughout the province. We look forward to working with Canada and local municipalities on these key flood protection projects.”

The Honourable Greg Selinger

Premier of Manitoba

“We are very pleased to be able to deliver the floodway project under budget. This multi-year project was a massive undertaking with many challenges most notably ensuring that the floodway was “flood ready” each and every spring. We thank everyone involved in the project from the general public, floodway workers, contractors, engineering consultants, regulators,
non-governmental organizations, municipal leaders, and the Governments of Canada and Manitoba.”

Ernie Gilroy

CEO of the Manitoba Floodway Authority

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