Waterton Boundary Fence

Waterton, AB

Waterton Boundary Fence

Client: Waterton Lakes National Park
Location: Waterton, AB

Usage: Boundary fence to identify the Park boundary and keep privately owned livestock from neighbouring ranches off of Parks property. There is also a 4m wide access to be brushed and cleared along the entire boundary that will be used by Parks maintenance staff to travel along for inspection and repairs of the fence during it’ working life.

Structure: 4 wire wood post boundary fence.

Building Envelope:  The fence extends along the entire length of the Waterton Lakes National Park boundary to the Canada/USA border. Approximately 44 km in length.

Features:

  • This project features 44km of class 3 galvanized barbed wire, ACQ treated wood posts and hot dipped galvanized staples. All main corner, brace and gate posts are 7-8” x 8’ long posts with 6”-7” x 6’and 7’ secondary brace posts and 6-7” braces.
  • While this is a seemingly simple structure to build there are many environmental, wildlife and logistical challenges to solve. There are many sensitive environmental and archeological zones throughout the boundary zone that must be taken into account while performing the work. Bird nesting, deer, moose and elk mating season, as well as bear hibernation, are taken into account when scheduling and performing the work.
  • A great deal of time is spent communicating and coordinating with Parks staff, private landowners, Alberta environment, municipal districts of Pincher Creek and Cardston, NCC (Nature Conservancy of Canada and Grazing leaseholders to ensure the most efficient access with the least impact on the environment.
  • The entire park boundary has been surveyed prior to any work being done to determine the location of existing fence to true boundary. Once the brushing of the 4m right of way is complete the construction survey is done to ensure alignment of new fence to true boundary and finally an as built survey is done to provide Parks Canada with a visual snapshot of the alignment of the new fence as it relates to the true park boundary.
  • The logistical challenges of getting workers, equipment and materials into and out of the work area day to day have been addressed by using side by side UTV’s, quads, tracked skid steers and some upcoming areas will require the use of a helicopter to ferry materials to and from some remote and very rugged terrain to minimize environmental impact and make the most efficient use of time and manpower.
  • Installation of the new fence in some of the most challenging and environmentally sensitive terrain is being done by hand since equipment access is not an option. Cloudy Ridge is a perfect example since all material was carried out and installed by hand. All old fence materials removed from the area were done so by hand as well. There are a number of wetland areas, ravines and creek crossings that have been completed in this manner as well.
  • Worker safety is a priority and since in some areas cell phone service is limited and at times non-existent, two-way radios programmed with Parks Canada channels and private channels for shorter distances are utilized for emergency communication. The crew submits a daily work plan before heading to remote areas and a check in procedure is in place as well as submitting a work report at the end of day to ensure all workers go home safe at the end of the day.
  • Westco Construction is very proud to be working with Parks Canada on a challenging and long term project that takes us back to our roots.
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