November 2017 marks the 100th anniversary of OPG's Calabogie Generating Station (GS).
To mark the station's big milestone, visitors are invited to tour the station on Saturday, July 29, from 1 to 5 p.m. Shuttle bus service will be available for transport at Barnet Park, located at 5179 Calabogie Road. Space is limited.
Located in Greater Madawaska Township on the Madawaska River downstream from Barrett Chute GS, the two-unit station produces four megawatts (MW) of clean, renewable electricity, enough to power about 4,000 homes.
In service since November 1917 and originally constructed by the Calabogie Light and Power Company, the Calabogie Generating Station first supported local development and the lumber industry. Its speedy completion was remarkable, given that power was available only seven months after construction started. This was made possible by adapting plant equipment that was built for another hydroelectric station.
The Madawaska River is central to the history of Calabogie. Some of the earliest commercial lumbering in Ontario began along the river between 1860 and 1890, due to the growing demand for lumber in Upper Canada and ships' masts for the British Navy. Not only did the river provide access to remote stands of timber, it was also used for transporting logs.
As early as the 1840s, log slides and booms were built on the river and dams were constructed at Calabogie, Highland Chute, Mountain Chute, and Arnprior to support logging operations. By the 1920s, lumbering had declined and the Madawaska River was used more for hydroelectric generation.
In 1929, Calabogie GS was acquired by OPG from a private company. Repairs were made in 2011 to the dam's mechanical and structural components, which included replacing the existing log handling equipment with a new, more efficient and safer design, and repairing and modifying the dam structure.
The station is currently being upgraded with new sluice gates and other repairs. This refurbishment work is scheduled to be completed later this year.
SOURCE: Ontario Power Generation Inc.