By Mark Squibb/December 2, 2021
Members of Holyrood town council are hopeful federal funding will help the town take the next step in securing a new water source.
Council called a special public meeting on Friday, November 26 to approve its application to the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Plan (ICIPI) for $718,000 to complete the next phase in accessing water from North Arm River.
Phase 2 of the project will prepare the area for the eventual construction of a water treatment plant, which constitutes Phase 3, and includes environmental registration of the water shed, site preparation, design and construction of an access road from Salmonier Line to the proposed intake location, as well as developing a pedestrian access road from the proposed intake to Island Pond, the design and installation of 180 metres of watermain to the intake, and a water intake system for the future water treatment plant connection.
“This is a great example of the benefit of investing in up front, engineering study work, so that we have shovel-ready projects on the shelf and ready to go when we have funding opportunities available,” said councillor Steve Winsor. “If we are successful, we can get this valuable piece of infrastructure completed at a very low cost to the town while continuing to prepare for the final phase of the project to complete the system. The town has, and will continue to have, infrastructure issues as it relates to water, and we must present a path forward to recovery. This is a great step on this path and will ensure sustainability into the future.”
The first phase of the project, the extension of the existing watermain 800 metres along the Salmonier Line near the location of the water supply, has already been approved under provincial multi-year capital works funding.
The Water Supply Engineering Study completed by SNC Lavalin just last week, determined the North Arm River is a safe and reliable water source for the town.
“It was anticipated that the next phases of the larger water supply project would be the subject of future funding opportunities,” said Winsor. “What was not anticipated was that the funding opportunity would present itself so quickly, with an application deadline by end of business day, today.”
The infrastructure and public works committee held a special meeting with SNC Lavalin two days before the meeting, and agreed the project needs to move forward in a logical, phased approach.
“We agreed that while there is more engineering work to be completed for the final phase, the water treatment facility, that the intermediate portion of work forms a credible project right now, and fits the parameters of the federal funding program, ICIP,” said Winsor.
The project will be cost shared 90/10, with the town borrowing $71,800 to cover its percentage.
Council voted unanimously to apply for the funding.