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Second Welland Canal - Lock 3 Remnants

A recent archeological dig revealed Lock 3 of the Second Welland Canal near downtown St. Catharines. The Merrit Trail and Hwy 406 can be seen nearby. (Photo: Matthew Jantz)



Hikers on the Merrit Trail near Downtown St. Catharines will be surprised to see a partially uncovered wall emerging from the ground below. The wall is part of Lock 3 from the Second Welland Canal that operated through downtown St. Catharines from 1845 until the early 1900s. The location of the lock was confirmed during a archeological dig conducted by the city in August 2008.




The presence of the lock so close to downtown St. Catharines is a great reminder that the Welland Canal once followed a route through the city, and was responsible for much of the early growth and development of St. Catharines.


At Lock 3, the Second Welland Canal diverged from its original route along 12 Mile Creek and continued along Dick's Creek, a smaller tributary that passed behind many of the shops and stores on St. Paul Street. The canal eventually turned southward toward the towns of Merriton and Thorold. The waters of the canal were directed into an underground culvert in the 1960s, and Highway 406 was built on top of the canal lands in the 1980's. Both of these projects contributed to the lock's burial.





From Hwy 406

Exit Hwy 406 at Westchester Ave. Travel south west on Westchester Avenue and turn left on St. Paul Street West crossing the Burgoyne Bridge. Immediately turn left on Bellevue Terrace and then left on St. Paul Cresent. Parking is available at the end of St. Paul Cresent. There is a small steel box-girder bridge here (the St. Paul Crescent Bridge) that can be taken across 12 Mile Creek. Cross the bridge and turn right along the gravel path. A three minute walk should bring you to the lock.


Text and photographs on this page were graciously contributed by Matthew Jantz.

(How can I become a Niagara Greenbelt website contributor?)


St. Catharines, Ontario

GPS Co-ordinates

Latitude 43.15408774
Longitude -79.24336016

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