January 13, 2023 5:00am
North Huron council has voted to demolish the Howson Dam at the north end of Wingham.
Reeve Paul Heffer says in the last few years several engineers looked at the dam and the decision by the last council was the dam should be de-commissioned, but by then they were in the lame duck period and had to wait until the new council was in place before they could make a decision. That decision has now been made and Heffer says it will cost just a little over one million dollars to take down the dam.
Heffer says one of the main reasons for wanting to get rid of the dam was safety.
“Safety is a big thing. We’re responsible if anything happened. And you know how people can get at the wrong places at the wrong time and so our public works director very concerned of that and that’s why we sort of had to proceed with this,” Heffer explained.
According to information given to Heffer and council, the de-commissioning can only be done at a certain time.
“The de-commissioning has to be done during certain months of the year. So I believe it’s June 15 to September 15, it has to be done during that time. You can only go in water in that 90-day time frame,” added Heffer.
The dam has been in its current condition for almost forty years, and Heffer adds they’re grateful that there hasn’t been any accidents so far, but they’ll be happy to have it out of the way.