Lake Ontario Flooding causes Oakville Public Space Closures

Lake Ontario Flooding, Oakville Public Space Closures, Ontario, Gairloch Gardens
Lake Ontario Flooding causes Oakville Public Space Closures
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Gisele Shaw

Gisele Shaw

Gisele Shaw is the Manager of Corporate Communication for the town of Oakville since 2002. Prior to working for the town she worked for Halton Region as a communications specialist. She is a graduate of Humber College.

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Due to Lake Ontario flooding, the following Oakville public space closures are in effect until further notice:

  1. All piers
  2. Coronation Park
  3. All grass sports fields
  4. Bronte Harbour – nightly closure from 8 p.m. – 6 a.m.
  5. Tannery Park parking lot
  6. Roadway to Lions Valley Park
  7. Gairloch Gardens (closed halfway down the park from the parking lot)
  8. Dingle Park (trail closed from Allan Street to Trafalgar Road)
  9. Carrington Promenade (westerly portion)
  10. Oakville and Bronte Harbour launch ramps
  11. Busby Park launch ramp
  12. Timber Lane – West Street pathway
  13. A short section of Water Street adjacent to the Oakville Central Library

With Oakville Public Space Closures residents are reminded to use caution around creeks, ponds and the lake as possible shoreline erosion can make for slippery and extremely dangerous conditions. Areas that are taped or fenced off have been deemed potentially unsafe and we ask that residents please respect these closures so that no one gets hurt.

According to the Oakville Power Boat Club’s Andrew Obee as of May 16 2017:

The International Lake Ontario-St. Lawrence River Board is the agency in charge of specifying the outflows from Lake Ontario according to a plan agreed to by the U.S. and Canada in 2016. The board has the power to tell the power companies that jointly own and operate the Moses Saunders Dam — Ontario Power Generation and the New York Power Authority — to release more or less water. The board’s mandate is to do that in a way that balances the impacts of flooding upstream and downstream from the dam.

It appears that as long as we do not get heavy precipitation, Lake Ontario water levels will begin to decline in the coming weeks. As a point of reference, last weekend the Lake Ontario outflow was 7,700 m3/s.

Lake Ontario’s level was 75.85 m [metres geodetic, roughly equivalent to metres above sea level, referenced to International Great Lakes Datum 1985] as of yesterday, which is 12 cm above the record high of 75.73 m for this time of year (beginning of 3rd quarter-month of May) set in 1973, and also 12 cm above the record high May monthly mean of 75.73 m, also set in May 1973.

Lake Ontario’s level is now above the highest water levels recorded since 1918. As noted previously, our daily Lake Ontario water level records only stretch back to the start of regulation in 1960, but monthly and beginning-of-quarter-month mean levels, coordinated with our US colleagues, extend through 1918. From these, we can state that Lake Ontario’s level of 75.84 m is now above the highest monthly mean recorded in any month since 1918, which was 75.76 m in June 1952, AND the highest water level recorded at any time of year since 1918, which was 75.82 m at the beginning of June 1952.

The Ottawa River flow continues to decline and this will generally continue over the coming days.
The drier conditions and declining flows downstream have allowed the Lake Ontario outflow to be increased again early this afternoon from 8,500 to 8,900 m3/s at 1201 hrs 16 May 2017.

Anticipated Water Level and Flow Impacts: Lake Ontario’s lake-wide average water levels may reach and maintain a stable peak over the next few days as the increased outflows and generally dry conditions offset the continued high inflows from Lake Erie. However, water levels may be more variably locally due to changing wind patterns over the next few days.

Longer-term, additional increases in Lake Ontario water levels are possible, but given the high and increasing outflows and generally drier conditions expected, any such increases in water level are expected to be much less than seen recently, and water levels are expected to begin to gradually decline over the next several weeks.

Outflows from Lake Ontario will continue to be adjusted to maintain levels at Lake St. Louis at around 22.48 m, according to the Plan 2014 “F-limit”. While Ottawa River flows remain high, they continue to decline rapidly.

Additional, gradual increases will be possible as conditions downstream continue to subside.
For more information about the status of sports fields, visit our Sports Field Closures and Facilities Updates page.

If water threatens to flood structures or roadways, please contact ServiceOakville at 905-845-6601 or

Additional Resources:

Halton Region – basement flooding

Disaster Recovery Assistance for Ontarians

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Readers Comments (1)

  1. Geoff Godard says:

    Good and complete article about a once in a lifetime event. Keep up the coverage.


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