Canada – Quarry rehabilitation to create a wetland in southern Calgary

South Pit, Meadows, Calgary

Aggregates / Canada

After operating the ‘South Pit' quarry in southern Calgary for over 30 years, Lafarge oversaw the rehabilitation of the land into the ‘Lafarge Meadows', a wetland area that has increased access for the local community to natural spaces while also providing a solution for storm water management.

 

Objectives

  • Develop a lush wetland complex for a wide variety of wildlife
  • Demonstrate leadership within the sector by implementing an innovative rehabilitation project exceeding standard rehabilitation requirements

Summary

Lafarge has transformed its former South Pit aggregates quarry in southern Calgary into the ‘Lafarge Meadows', an extension of the nearby Fish Creek Provincial Park. Situated within a vital wildlife corridor, Lafarge Meadows now includes a large constructed wetland. This provides essential aquatic and riparian habitat to migrating and resident birds and waterfowl, fish, reptiles, and amphibians, all within the boundaries of a major urban center.

The creation of this wetland area has also added up to two million cubic meters of storm water management for communities in south Calgary, through linkages between restored ponds and the city's stormwater elimination network. Stormwater is redirected to flow through a series of three ponds and a meandering stream, where many pollutants and most sediment is filtered from the water. This provides wetland habitat and also significantly improves the quality of the water reaching the nearby Bow River.
We operated South Pit quarry for over 30 years, until the late 1990s.

Results

Lafarge Meadows has been certified through the Wildlife Habitat Council's ‘Wildlife at Work' program. It has also been awarded the prestigious Emerald Award from the Alberta Emerald Foundation recognizing outstanding environmental initiatives. It is expected that in the coming years, park users will no longer be able to recognize the site's former use as a gravel operation.

 
 
 

Lafarge quarry rehabilitation in Canada - the Biodiversity case study in details (pdf, 310.65 KB)