Chaudière Falls (Portage Power)Digital Doors Open Ottawa

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Chaudière Falls (Portage Power)

Chaudière Falls is a subsidiary of Hydro Ottawa Holdings Inc. and is a 29-megawatt hydroelectric facility that feeds into the provincial grid and powers 20,000 homes with clean, renewable energy, reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 115,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide every year. Built entirely below ground, this facility was designed to have minimal-to-zero impacts on the visual, natural and aquatic environments. To ensure safe fish passage through the facility, they have incorporated leading technological solutions to protect migrating American eel, endangered under the Ontario Endangered Species Act (ESA). In addition, there are new spawning beds being built downstream to promote the recovery efforts associated with sturgeon (also endangered under the ESA). Chaudière Falls is home to Canada’s oldest hydroelectric station still in operation. It was responsible for lighting Ottawa’s streets with electricity and fuelled the industrial explosion of the mid-1800s by providing water power for the vast complex of lumber mills that once occupied the shoreline of the Ottawa River. The new site offers safe viewing platforms and greater public access in the form of a defined corridor on the roof of the new below-grade hydro facility. A new bridge across the intake canal is open for pedestrian and cyclist traffic. Using a restorative philosophy, they are maintaining elements of the city’s industrial past, including refurbishing the site’s oldest buildings that survived the Great Fire of 1900. As part of Digital Doors Open, enjoy a virtual tour of this site.

Contact info

4 Booth Street
Ottawa, Ontario


Dates/hours open

Feb 21, 11:36pm - Feb 21, 11:36pm