Emmerson Dam
Beauty and Function since 1946.
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Press Release

 May 28,2013

Rehabilitation and additional structural support are being carried out on the Emmerson Dam in town this summer. The concrete dam was built in 1946 by W.O. Bailey & Sons. It replaced a series of previous earth and wood dams located on the same site when Haliburton was first settled in 1864.
W.O. Bailey ran a mill on the site until the late 1950's and constructed the current dam to create a mill pond.
There were concerns about what to do with an existing structure. The most economical choice was to simply remove the stop logs and tear the dam down. However, over the years the dam has provided aestehetics to the town and facilitated a waterfall for the protected walleye spawining bed below.
Planning for the upgrade started in 2004. A three year public safety review under the Ontario Dam Safety Guidelines was completed by Totten Sims Hubicki Associates from Whitby in 2008 and found the dam to be in the "low risk" category. Stability tests were carried out in 2010 by Geo-Logic Inc. from Peterborough. Engineering and design work were completed in 2012 by Genivar Inc. from Markham.
Galcon Marine Ltd. from Toronto, a firm specializing in dam and underwater repairs has been contracted to do the repairs, utilizing local labour where possible.
"The engineering of this project was designed to last for the long term and it contributes to the continued legacy of a beautiful tourist town" states owner Kim Emmerson.
The watercourse is part of the Trent-Severn Waterway and the flow originates 1.5km upstream at Drag Lake where another dam and power generating facilities are located.
The project is conducted under the supervision of the Ministry of Natural Resources (Provincial), the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (Federal) and Parks Canada (The Trent-Severn Waterway).




1987- Cuming-Cockburn & Associates
Pre-Feasibility Study
2001- The River and The Town
Interconnectedness and Environmental
2003- Prefeasibility Hydropower
Trent U- Sam Yeaman
2004-Community Response to Drag
River Hydro Development
2006-Possible Funding Incentives
Trent U- Ivan Ho
2008 Dam Safety Review- AECOM
2010-Geotechnical and Foundation Assessment
Geo-Logic Inc.
2012- Genivar- Refurbishment Engineering
under the Lakes and Rivers Improvement Act
2013- Haliburton Solar and Wind
Consultation and Project Management Services
Started the project for generation

2014-  BluMetric Class EA Assessment-
See tab above

2014-Connection Impact Assessment
 Hydro One

2014- Earthworks
Services Assessment

2014- Biological Assessment
Natural Resource Solutions Inc.

2014- Heritage Impact Assessment

2014- Aboriginal  Consultation

2015- Terrestrial Vibration Assessment

2015- Engineering for uplift
forces during a 100 year flood.

2016- Engineering Design Report
For Work Permit Application

2016- Distribution Connection Agreement
Hydro One

2016- Self Declaration Letter
Hydro One

2016- Confirmation of Verification
Evidence Report Agreement
Hydro One

2017- Electrical Safety Agreement
Hydro One
2019- NRSI Water Velocity
Testing and Analysis

2019 May- Final Approvals Completed


Work Permits

Dam Repair:

#2012-038 MNR

(expired December 31,2013)

Under the Lakes and Rivers

Improvement Act



File # regarding Fisheries Act

Fisheries and Oceans Canada




Work Permit Granted under the

Lakes and Rivers Improvement Act


September 7,2016


Ontario Ministry of Environment

Permit to take water 




Building Permit for Turbine House

Municipality of Dysart et al


September 21,2016


Fisheries and Oceans Canada

Fish and Fish Habitat Protection Program

File # 16-HCAA-01048

Approval May 7,2019