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A Mitigation Plan for the Red Deer River Basin

Following the devastating floods of June 2013, the Alberta Government needed to determine how to mitigate future flood damage future flood damage in the Red Deer River Basin. It’s a massive area, stretching 45,100 square kilometres from the foothills west of Red Deer, through the badlands surrounding Drumheller, and the prairie surrounding Brooks.

The government needed the information fast in order to determine what measures needed to be put in place before another year’s rain and runoff hit. They looked to us to develop a feasibility study looking at short- and long-term projects that would add layers of resiliency against future floods for communities in the basin. The short timeline for the study required our team to undertake intensive data gathering and assembly for the study team to use.

We developed an internal geo-referenced project website to organize the information, and data was added to the site continuously throughout the project. As well as providing easy access to information for the project team, the website proved a useful basis for interactive discussions and project identification with major stakeholders. From protection of homes and businesses to provision of drinking water, we considered all the implications of extreme flood events within the basin.

With time of the essence, we created a report providing a cost benefit analysis for over 100 structural and non-structural, emergency preparedness, mitigation, and adaptation projects.  With contributions from across our North American offices, the report and website were team efforts that will help the Government make informed decisions on which projects to progress.

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