The federal government is investing $49.2 million in flood-prevention measures in communities in the lower Laurentians region of Quebec.
The monetary boost, which was announced on Friday, will help fund projects to protect Deux-Montagnes, Ste-Marthe-sur-le-Lac, Boisbriand, St-Eustache and Rosemère from rising floodwaters in the future.
“We look back on how we said in 2017 that it was a historic year for natural disasters and unfortunately 2019 was just as catastrophic in many ways,” said Infrastructure Minister François-Philippe Champagne. “We are acting in a fast, decisive and concrete way.”
Quebecers were on high alert for weeks when severe flooding struck the province this spring. Rising water levels struck 250 municipalities in Quebec and more than 1,000 soldiers were deployed to affected areas at the peak of the flooding.
As part of its plan, the Canadian government is providing nearly $20 million to rebuild a dike in Ste-Marthe-sur-le-Lac, one of the hardest-hit areas in the province.
At the height of the flooding in April, a natural dike burst in the town and forced 6,000 people to flee their homes. The breach sent rushing water from the Lake of Town Mountains into the community, immediately flooding streets and homes.
The new dike is expected to be 1.5 metres higher than the original structure to protect Ste-Marthe-sur-le-Lac.
Ottawa’s investment will also be used for prevention efforts in Pointe-Calumet, St-Joseph-du-Lac and Oka.
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— With files from The Canadian Press