Holyrood water study showing positive indications

By Chris Lewis/August 19, 2021

Holyrood council is hoping it finally has an answer to its water woes.

As part of an effort to find an emergency water source for the community, the Town contracted SNC-Lavalin to investigate and provide it with a water study of two rivers near Walls Roads along Salmonier Line, which both feed into North Arm River.

During a meeting of council on Tuesday, Aug. 3, councillor Roger Myette said the aim is to possibly make use of Daniel’s River, beside Wall’s Road, for the emergency source. The river is fed by Lewis Pond and Island Pond.

Myette said the study conducted by SNC-Lavalin showed positive results from the river.

“The Department of Environment will dictate how much water can be drawn, if it can be a backup source, etcetera,” Myette said.

The water study should be completed within a few weeks, according to Myette.

Mayor Kevin Costello said the Town had met with SNC-Lavalin the week prior to Tuesday’s meeting and everyone around the table was concerned about the amount of water flowing through the river.

However, SNC-Lavalin had conducted some low flow analyses, which found the river flows between 10-litres per second to 70-litres per second depending on the time of the year and the environmental conditions.

Unsure of how to take that data and correlate it in layman’s terms, Costello said SNC-Lavalin was also able to provide the Town with the rough daily usage for the town.

“The rough daily usage for the Town of Holyrood is an average of about 13.8-litres per second,” he said. “So, based on that analysis and our daily usage, that water source should be more than acceptable for the demand we need.”

Still, Costello said it will boil down to the Department of Environment and Climate Change as to what the Town is able to do with the river.

The application, according to Myette, needs to be sent within the coming weeks.

Costello said he is hopeful.

“It’s a completely separate river from Big Triangle Pond, because there were some concerns about the (proposed) Eagle Ridge development (several years ago) in that area and using the water from North Arm River,” Costello said. “But, based on the information SNC has provided us, any potential development in that area would not impact this section of the river. So, that’s very positive overall.”

But, there is work to be done.

“It still has to be registered, environmentally, and a barrage of questions may come from that. But, right now initial indications are that the study is good,” Costello said.

From there, Costello said, this will push the Town to spend its multi-year capital works money on extending the town’s water line further into Salmonier Line from where it left off last year.

Costello said he hopes this will lead to a potential emergency water supply while also providing critical water infrastructure to residents who have been without the service for some time.

“Some residents have been advocating for as long as I’ve been here to get water services out there, and so this will be another push to get that part of town serviced,” Costello said.

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