Roche Béranger water reservoir


Project for the creation of the Roche Béranger water reservoir

In the summer of 2020, after 4 years of reflection by the Lift compagny and MDP Consulting, work began on the Chamrousse 1750 reservoir project. It is a development project in the philosophy of a new mountain economy, sustainable, virtuous and creating values and non relocatable jobs supported by the resort of Chamrousse.
Discover this project of hill reservoir, a water storage structure filled with surface water and runoff, at the bend of your hiking itinerary, with all our apologies for the occasional inconvenience caused.

Key figures:

  • Structure: 93,000 m3 water reservoir
  • Location: Chamrousse 1750 - Roche Béranger
  • Objectives: water storage for snow makers (winter season), creation of a small pool/water jets possible next to the reservoir on the Malamute side and activity(ies) on the reservoir under discussion but swimming prohibited (summer season)
  • Filling / water arrivals: 2 wells belonging to Véolia at Arselle + run-off water from a natural spring on the Bérangère side
  • Work: reservoir - 100,000 m3 of material moved and reused on site (no evacuation or transport to limit costs) and snow production building made of wood and concrete - 2x the flow of artificial snow
  • Financing: 100% Lift compagny "Régie des Remontées Mécaniques de Chamrousse" (3.5 million euros)
  • Estimated duration of the work: May - October 2020 from 6am-12pm and 2pm-8pm (with a launch planned in August)
  •  - © MDP Consulting

Consideration of environmental issues specific to the mountain

The location of this project was chosen according to the ecological issues of the ski area and the area chosen is the one with the least number of issues.
No sensitive, rare and/or protected or heritage plant species have been inventoried in the sector. No sensitive habitats such as wetlands or priority community habitats have been identified in the area and avoidance, reduction, monitoring and support measures in response to the issues identified have been put in place (e.g. a worksite schedule that avoids disturbing and destroying sensitive fauna species during the breeding season).

With all the necessary authorisations for its successful completion, the Local Water Commission and the Rhône-Alpes Federation for the Protection of Nature (FRAPNA, now "France Nature Environnement" FNE) present at this commission gave a favourable opinion (DREAL, DDT, Commission des Sites, ABF) that this project could be carried out.
It was also the subject of a public enquiry during which there was no opposition to the project. This enquiry was carried out in 3 cities (Chamrousse, Vaulnaveys-le-haut and Vaulnaveys-le-bas) and the project was the subject of a public meeting in the commune of Vaulnaveys in the presence of the Commissaire Enquêteur.

The project is located within the ski area in sectors that have already been redesigned. It is therefore not a question of new areas being impacted or an extension of the domain.
The French Office for Biodiversity is closely monitoring the construction site and, at the start of the project, operations are taking place in compliance with the environmental recommendations issued during the assessment and appraisal phases. No disturbance is to be noted (no hydrocarbon pollution, no pollution of suspended matter in the water, no destruction of species, etc.).

As far as aesthetics are concerned, it is always impressive to see sectors reworked in this way, however, the land will be restored and re-vegetated with local species.
The reservoir will be fed in compliance with the regulations, and studies have been carried out concluding that it will have little impact on the water resource, which will be maintained at all times.
The advantages of such a storage facility are that it avoids the need to withdraw water at times when resources are at their lowest. The reservoir will be filled at times of high water when the flow rate will significantly reduce the impact of a withdrawal.