The existing wetland in the Springbank Ravine is being removed to facilitate ring road construction. The wetland traverses the TUC in the area of the Bow Trail S.W. interchange and cannot be avoided. To provide a stable foundation for the highway infrastructure in this area, the wetland is being excavated and replaced with suitable material.
The Alberta Wetland Policy is in place to conserve, restore, protect and manage Alberta’s wetlands to sustain their environmental, social and economic benefits. Activities that may impact a wetland are expected to follow the mitigation hierarchy by first avoiding, and then minimizing and reclaiming impacts to wetlands. As a last resort, where avoidance and minimization efforts are not feasible, a replacement fee may be paid for the permanent loss of the wetland area and relative wetland value.
The Government of Alberta received Water Act approval to pay a compensation fee to remove the wetland. This compensation fee was paid by the Government of Alberta (ahead of the South project contract being awarded) to Ducks Unlimited Canada, an authorized wetlands replacement agent.