Funding announced for Britannia flood-control wall

The construction of a flood-control wall in the neighborhood of Britannia is expected to begin in October after the City of Ottawa and the province announced $1.3 million to fund the project.

Province and city to fund $1.3M project in lowland neighbourhood

MPP Bob Chiarelli attended a funding announcement at the Britannia Yacht Club. (CBC)

The construction of a flood-control wall in the neighborhood of Britannia is expected to begin in October after the City of Ottawa and the province announced $1.3 million to fund the project.

The funding includes $195,000 from Britannia residents.

Bob Chiarelli said he has heard the concerns as former mayor and now as MPP.

"Flooding in this area raises health and safety concerns, and there are long term environmental and economic  implications," Chiarelli said. 

Mark Taylor, the councillor for Bay Ward, said the plan is to customize the structure for each property.

"There may be grass on one, there may a bit of a wall on the other — whatever fits in best with their property," Taylor said.

Residents divided over plan

Many homes in low lying areas near the Ottawa River have been damaged when water levels rise. Current laws won't allow major property development without modern flood control measures.

The Rideau Valley Conservation Authority studied the risk of flooding in Britannia​ but some residents have questioned the science.

The 50 homeowners along the river also worry what a large wall will do to their property values.

But Matilde Hahn, of the Britannia Community Association, said it's not just the waterfront homes at risk of flooding.

"The community has been developed in an uneven way so when the water goes over and past the waterfront homes, they end up flooding the homes behind them," she said. 

"Some people don't want to be told what to do with their land and I respect that. But, unfortunately, the good of the whole here was to have it flood proofed."