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Latlng: (43.399971, -80.365349)

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Speed River Dam


Discovered by ishootthings
Created Jul 21 2020
Recent status Being Demolished
Category Other
City Cambridge, Ontario
Location # 16625

Status as ''Being Demolished'' as this is what the dam is doing to itself. I had read some city PDF's on the dam and the current strategy for replacement/repair has been a hot topic here in Cambridge as its been listed as a heritage item in the inventory of properties, but having no designation complicated this process a bit. The heritage committee assessed the dam and concluded that it WAS worthy of a designation, BUT would only be given one if the structure was to be saved of some variety.

The dam we see today was built around 1860-ish the heritage report notes as they estimate it was redone with the limestone on the control towers on both sides a time that Cambridge flour and grist mills (what is now P&H Milling) had some upgrades/renovations done. The dam and the sluiceway to the millrace (still intact beside the dam and going under king st to P&H) are slated for replacement as they are rapidly deteriorating. The slope for water is rough and has some chunks out of it, the retaining wall leaks water thru it, the north control tower is FALLING APART and the timbers inside are leaking water thru when it should be going around. The sluiceway has no way to move the gate because the mechanism is mostly missing and the parts that could have moved are concreted solid meaning there is no gate and nothing to move. So overall, the City determined that this is better off to be totally replaced rather than restored/rebuilt. I had to read up on this dam in order to throw it on here. The dam used to be on the other side of the river until 1905-ish when the train trestle was built across the river, and at that time, the dam appeared to be configured backwards to what we see now. LOL. The moar you know.

This STRUCTURE is abandoned but the site is not. 2021-2022 it is slated for total demolition and replacement. Very scenic but be prepared if you climb all over it like I did. Rubber boots. Gloves. Make sure you can swim. Be prepared for SUPER SLIPPERY algae. The water moves fast too and can push your feet when you try to step. Safety first. Fall 2020 the City of Cambridge is reconvening to have a look at some designs/set some companies to design and see what they like. It would be nice if they could pay homage to this dam but this isnt how the city rolls. They just erase history one bit at a time until one day, you look around and you have no idea where the place you live, came to be on the map. Oh well. Very scenic anyhow.


Latlng: (43.399971, -80.365349)


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