house near a marina

Early History

The Forbes Pump in Tilbury East was constructed around 1875 and was the first mechanically powered pump.

The brick lined Tunnel Relief Drain was constructed in Romney in 1911. It is 6 feet in diameter and approximately 1,500 feet long and outlets into Lake Erie.

Recent History

The Agricultural and Rural Development Act (ARDA) provided funding through the Federal, Provincial, and local governments in the late 1960’s and early 1970’s to construct a system of dykes and embankments along Lake St. Clair and part of the Thames River.

The Rivard Pumping Works was constructed in the late 1980’s, and drains over 33,000 acres throughout the Communities of Dover and Chatham Township. It is believed to be the largest drainage-pumping scheme by area in Canada.

The McGregor Creek Dam and Diversion Channel was constructed to serve as a by-pass for floodwaters around South Chatham. It was completed in 1999 at a cost of approximately $11.5 million. This project was funded through Lower Thames Valley Conservation Authority, local governments, and the Ministry of the Environment.

The Darcy McKeough Dam and Diversion was constructed in the 1970’s to protect flooding in the Wallaceburg and Dresden areas.

For more drainage history call Drainage Services at 519.360.1998.