This historical plaque was added in 2023 in collaboration with the South Nation Conservation.

It is located at the W.E. Burton Conservation Area, at 288 Castor Street, Russell, ON.

Russell Weir

The Russell Weir which has a huge impact on water management in the Township is a 79 m long reinforced concrete wall about 4 meters high. It was constructed by South Nation Conservation (SNC) in 1967, downstream from the original 1916 dam site on the Castor River.

The structure creates a reservoir of water within the village and ensures that water remains in the river year-round for low-flow augmentation and recreational purposes.

1980 Aerial - SNC Russell Weir - SNC
  • 1980 aerial view of the Russell Weir - Photo supplied by SNC.

In 1993, SNC transferred the property to the north of the river to the municipality to construct the Russell Centennial Pool in exchange for some forested land adjacent to the dam and parkland to expand the Conservation Area. Properties south of the Castor River around the dam were used to create the W.E. Burton Conservation Area which runs alongside the Castor River with a 3-kilometers recreational trail that provides river access, scenic views and recreational activities.

M Burton - Photo SNCW.E. Burton Conservation Area

In 1985, the Russell Conservation Area was renamed to W.E. Burton Conservation Area in honor of Mr. Burton who has been a long-standing Authority member at South Nation River Conservation Authority.

WeirSouth Nation Conservation

Locally, the South Nation Conservation (SNC) operates several water control structures including dams, weirs, and berms to reduce risk to life and damage to property. We rely on these man-made structures to manage flows during periods of heavy rainfall and drought.

The South Nation enters the Township of Cambridge from the south where it meets the Castor, a major tributary, before continuing its sinuous course to the Ottawa River. 

Aerial View 2023 - Russell TWP

  • 2023 Aerial Photo of the Russell Weir - Photo Russell Township.

Reference: South Nation Conservation