By Cole Parkinson
The Municipal District of Taber will continue to see progress on their internal and contractor driven projects throughout 2019.
During council’s regular meeting on Jan. 29, council got a view into the January 2019 infrastructure report which highlighted the timelines on a variety of projects.
The first of several works presented for council was the Alberta Community Resiliency Program which is a West Township 8 Range 16 Storm-water Drainage project.
Right now, preliminary design work is almost finished with administration estimating it was around 95 per cent done.
“We are in the very final stages of design now, we are still working on a couple landowner issues with regards to the drainage portion of it. Stantec (Engineering) should be sending me an email to find out where we are it with it and as soon as we get that done, we’d like to hold another meeting with the landowners, stakeholders and start the Water Act approval. We are also looking at splitting that up a little bit between the drainage portion south of the canal and the wetland portion working with TID (Taber Irrigation District). If we can get that portion tendered out sooner, then the project can get started this spring hopefully. It’s another wetland Alberta Environment Water Act approval issue,” said Jack Dunsmore, an M.D. contract worker.
The Highway 3 Twinning Committee continues to have meetings as they hammer out the details of their drainage project.
“Jack and I both sit on the Highway 3 Twinning committee and we are meeting with that group again tomorrow (Jan. 30) to discuss more of the drainage portion and realignment,” explained Craig Pittman, director of infrastructure.
One of the major forces of the project moving forward revolves around the Horsefly Spillway which council had approved to move forward with applying for grants last fall.
“Part of the drainage we are looking at is, the Horsefly Spillway project is included in that as well as east of Taber, which I think we called the Reliance area before. That will be a part of that meeting tomorrow,” added Dunsmore.
The often talked about Highway 36 Vauxhall rest area sees the preliminary design and cost estimate completed.
“We received a draft memorandum of agreement and a draft lease agreement from Alberta Transportation. The municipality had a few edits they wanted to see in that, so the edits have been sent back to Transportation for their consideration and revisions,” continued Pittman.
The service agreement between the two will also come back to council once the revised document is sent back from Alberta Transportation. Both Dunsmore and Pittman stated they expect the project to start work this summer.
Bridge File 80155/BRID Drop 5, which is a Strategic Transportation Infrastructure funded project, saw construction begin in early October. Even with the contractor reporting good progress made so far, they are still slightly behind schedule.
Concrete is scheduled to be complete by mid-March with seven pours remaining and they stated Feb. 20 would see the bridge girders be placed, though the road still wouldn’t be opened yet.
“It’s quite the project, it’s not your normal bridge replacement,” added Dunsmore.
With the project cost near the $2.5 million mark, though most was funded by Strategic Transportation Infrastructure, administration believes the process so far has been well worth the money.
“I believe we are getting very good value, especially on the bridge component with the way it is a collaborative project between BRID and the M.D. of Taber,” said Pittman.
Other projects progressing in the early part of 2019 include the Stafford Lake Resort drainage improvement. While the project is still in the early stages, administration reports good progress made so far.
“We have received a draft copy of the detailed design. We’ll be reviewing that and moving it forward in the near future,” stated Pittman.
Projects with the Vauxhall and District Regional Water Services Commission (VDRWSC) are in motion as well. Both the Prairie Gold Produce (PGP) raw waterline installation and potable waterline are complete. As far as mechanical work for the VDRWSC and Prairie Gold Produce, scope of work includes mechanical systems, reservoir tanks, computer programming and waterline connections at the VDRWSC meter vault and PGP site.
Barnwell company Porter Tanner is doing the work and the completion date is set for May 31, 2019.
“I crunched some numbers going through that and we are still pretty good for budget numbers, we are just hoping there is no big contingency somewhere. Craig and I have talked and we don’t see anywhere there will be any difference, so we should be coming in under budget a little bit on that one,” added Dunsmore.
The final project highlighted in the report was around the Grassy Lake lot development.
This particular property development has limits due to hamlet sewage lagoons and a non-operating landfill site previously owned and managed by the Village of Grassy Lake prior to dissolution and becoming a hamlet under M.D. jurisdiction.
As part of that challenge, Tetra Tech has already been selected to do the Phase two environmental assessment required to apply for set-back variance and the initial meeting has happened but no start date has been set.
“We are in the process of getting a service agreement with (Tetra Tech) and they have dropped their price a little bit. It is going to be a long process, probably a two-year report before that process is finished,” said Dunsmore.