Parks Canada started restorative work on the locks and infrastructure around it in November 2018. It will take three winter and spring seasons to complete it. The work will stop at the end of April of each year to allow for the opening of the Rideau Canal early May. It’s hard to believe but that is only a bit more than three months from now.
The first step was to built extensive enclosures over the locks so the space can be heated with propane. The photos will give an impression of the extent of the construction site.
Enclosure of the west side of the first lock at Colonel By Lake. When finished, the lock space can be heated and the restoration work can be started. The logistics are extraordinary and the work will involve removal and replacement of damaged limestone blocks, backfill and grouting. In fact, it will involve a total overhaul and rebuild of the stone works.
Enclosure in progress on the East side of the lock.
The picnic area is now a staging and logistics area. This will be restored again to a grass covered camping and picnic area in April-May, we imagine.
The lockmaster’s office grounds have become a storage area for propane tanks and piles of scaffolding.
All the while the lake level is low and will remain extreme low to allow the restauraton work to proceed. The run-off below the weir creates a nice winter scene.
From the Parks Canada website: Kingston Mills Lock Rehabilitation is part of an unprecedented $3 billion dollars investment over 5 years to support infrastructure work to heritage, visitor, waterway and highway assets located within national historic sites, national parks, and national marine conservation areas across Canada. These investments represent the largest federal infrastructure plan in the 105-year history of Parks Canada.
For more information go here: https://www.pc.gc.ca/en/lhn-nhs/on/rideau/visit/infrastructure/kingston/ecluses-kingston-mills-lock