Glenmore Dam

Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Project Details


CEA Award of Excellence: Community Development, CEA Award of Excellence: Water Resources

Project Leadership:

David Mack, P.Eng.

Glenmore Dam Infrastructure Improvement in Calgary, Alberta

The Glenmore Dam and Reservoir are located on the Elbow River in Calgary, Alberta. The 320 m long, 30 m high concrete gravity dam was built in 1932 primarily to supply water to the residents of Calgary. Recent dam safety reviews and inspections identified several deficiencies within the dam facilities. Major dam upgrades were needed to improve reservoir operations (water storage and flood mitigation), enhance its stability, extend its service life, and replace the dam’s deteriorating bridge deck. Klohn Crippen Berger was retained by the City of Calgary to provide geotechnical, hydrotechnical, structural, mechanical, and electrical engineering services for the project.


    • Preservation of historical architectural significance of 90-year-old dam
    • Coordination of work on dam and bridge deck with high and low river inflows, changing reservoir and ice levels
    • Maintaining adequate water storage to meet demands and prevent contamination
    • Avoiding environmentally sensitive periods of the Elbow River and impacts on migratory birds


  • Three-dimensional (3D) finite element dynamic analysis for seismic modelling of the dam given its height
  • Replacement of existing timber stoplogs located across seven spillway bays with new vertical lift gates with dedicated electric hoists mounted on new elevated platform
  • Post-tensioned rock and pier anchors along the spillway section of the dam and load testing of existing rock anchors in the spillway stilling basin
  • Repairs of damaged and deteriorated concrete along the upstream face of the dam and at various other locations along the dam, including the spillway stilling basin
  • Replacement of deteriorated bridge deck and balustrades across the dam
  • Lighting for the elevated spillway hoist platform and access house, along the replacement bridge deck, and along the arches supporting the bridge deck


  • Increased lifespan of the dam
  • Improved aesthetics
  • Increased drinking water storage
  • Enhanced recreational amenities
  • Enhanced flood protection