Londoners hoping for a quick resolution to the future of the Springbank Dam may be out of luck.
The Civic Works committee will review the draft terms of reference for the One River environmental assessment Tuesday, which will include both the Back to the River plan and the future of the Springbank Dam. The terms of reference will determine what the city studies, and how long it will take.
According to a city report, the environmental assessment, which comes with a price tag of $900,000, won’t be completed until May, 2018 — months before the next municipal election.
“We have to do three season inventories, look at the species at risk, and measure those things,” said Ward 4 Councillor Jesse Helmer.
“Sometimes you have to do that over more than just a sample one month, you have to look at different times of the year and see what’s going on. So, that’s part of the reason why it takes so long, you have to cover, in a comprehensive way, the environmental aspects.”
Those who want the dam repaired believe higher water levels in the summer will promote river front development and ensure the success of the Back to the River project.
The dam doesn’t play a role in flood protection, and is only needed for recreational purposes.