Calculated Improvements: Downtime Ensures Reliability at Canadian and U.S. Locks

By GLSR Staff  |  Locks, Marine Highway
Between December 2021 and March 2022, The St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation (SLSMC) is investing more than C$75 million to complete major maintenance work for its bridges, locks and canals.

Over the past decade, the SLSMC and Great Lakes St. Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation (GLS) have invested C$925 million in modernizing the binational Seaway infrastructure assets. GLS is amid the final stages of its $92.6 million asset renewal plan, which includes work at the Eisenhower and Snell locks. This rigorous binational program contributes to the Seaways near 100% reliability.

Canadian Locks

During the 2021 closure, the SLSMC continued with:

  • Maintenance of the state-of-the-art components for the hands-free mooring system,
  • Bridge repairs, rehabilitation and maintenance (e. g. mechanical system, counterweight work, structural repairs, replacement of stairs),
  • Lock gate maintenance (e. g. painting, mechanical system, etc. ),
  • Modernizing fenders and
  • Repairs on lock-wall concrete.

Soo Locks

Dual dewatering is required for the $16 million in maintenance and upgrades at the Soo Locks over the winter. Shutdowns for winter work extend until March 24 for the Poe Lock and April 30 for the MacArthur Lock.

Over 10 weeks, between 150 and 200 workers faced brutal temperatures and conditions to replace and empty container value machinery, replace a gate fill, replace timber wood, conduct detailed inspections and more.

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