Skip to content

New Port Moody boardwalk must be built to withstand climate change

The popular boardwalk on Shoreline Trail has been closed since last December
A rendering of the proposed new wooden boardwalk structure across the east end of Burrard Inlet at Noons Creek a consultant is recommending be built to replace the existing structure that was damaged by a king tide last December.

A new wooden boardwalk across the tidal mud flats and marshes at the east end of Burrard Inlet in Port Moody will have to be higher and wider to account for higher sea levels in the future that are a consequence of climate change and improve accessibility and safety for users.

But a report being presented to council on Tuesday (May 23) doesn’t say how much it will cost to replace the existing structure that was installed more than 30 years ago and had to be closed last winter when it was damaged by a king tide in December.

An engineering assessment determined the work should happen “within the next few years.”

In the report, Tim Aucott, senior project engineer, said even before the boardwalk and bridges were damaged, they were already showing their age and were frequently covered by water during high tides and storm surges.

A consultant retained by the city has recommended the new boardwalk follow the same footprint as the existing wooden trail to minimize its impact on environmentally sensitive areas.

Supporting it with lightweight helical screw piles would also minimize any disturbance and last for more than 75 years.

City staff also engaged with First Nations groups, the Port Moody Historical Society and various environmental advocates like the Port Moody Ecological Society, the Burrard inlet Marine Enhancement Society, Burke Mountain Naturalists and Trails BC.

They recommended a proposed viewing platform to be built as part of the “in the Presence of the Ancestors” welcome post project be included in the boardwalk’s reconstruction.

The proposed platform would be constructed around the fifth of five welcome posts being carved by artists from the kʷikʷəƛ̓əm (Kwikwetlem), Tsleil-Waututh, Musqueam, Katzie and Squamish Nations to be installed at locations along the Shoreline Trail between Rocky Point and Old Orchard parks.

Aucott said coordinating the boardwalk and viewing platform projects would reduce costs, environmental impact and provide a better experience for visitors.

Work on the viewing platform is scheduled to begin in August.

Aucott said a temporary structure to replace the bridges and sections of boardwalk damaged last December should be in place in the next month.