Reconstruction of docks for the Tadoussac/Baie-Sainte-Catherine Ferry

The Société des traversiers du Québec acquired new larger vessels for the Tadoussac/Baie-Sainte-Catherine Ferry, thus necessitating the reconstruction of the docks and facilities.

The Société des traversiers du Québec (STQ) required the port facilities to be adapted to accommodate vessels with increased capacity.

The multidisciplinary project was executed in two phases. The first phase of the mandate involved confirming the main technical and operational parameters of the docks, waiting areas, access roads and all other connected structures (docking facilities, electricity and lighting). The second phase involved proposing solutions for maximizing the expected advantages of the increased loading capacity.

The team prepared preliminary, conceptual and environmental studies, drawings and specifications, and estimates, and provided technical assistance during construction, along with quality control services for the following activities:

  • Reconstruction of external foundations
  • Increasing the height of the vertical face of the docking facility
  • Repairs to the electricity transmission and lighting systems
  • Replacement of the existing cable-hoist system for the boarding ramps with a hydraulic cylinder system (16 cylinders) and overhead structure
  • Modification of abutments
  • Extension of the services building

The team identified two major challenges during the preliminary design stage: the protection of marine mammals and the continuity of services during construction work.

Protection of marine mammals

In light of significant environmental constraints, including the presence of belugas and a prohibition against noise in the water, the team innovated by executing construction of the foundations using a containment method to limit the exposure of marine mammals to noise during the work.

A number of environmental protection measures were also applied, including periods where the installation of pilings was restricted and the implementation of a marine mammal observation program.

With a view to minimizing the environmental footprint and limiting debris produced by the demolition work, the central foundation supporting the existing access-ramp raising structure was reused in the reconstruction of the docks.

Continuity of services during construction work

The selected design, planning and method of execution allowed the ferry service between Tadoussac and Baie-Sainte-Catherine to remain in operation during the entire construction period.

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