By Jensen, Randy on October 27, 2020.
The Town of Coaldale, the Municipality of Crowsnest Pass and the Siksika First Nation received major funding for water management under the federal and provincial governments’ green infrastructure plan. The funding was announced by Alberta Minister of Infrastructure Prasad Panda and federal Minister of Infrastructure and Communities Catherine McKenna during a press conference on Monday morning.
Crowsnest Pass received $19.5 million for its Frank Wastewater Project upgrade. The Government of Canada contributed $7.8 million to the project, the Government of Alberta contributed about $6.5 million, and the final sum of about $5.2 million was contributed by the municipality.
The money will fund upgrades to an existing wastewater treatment plant at Frank to allow it to comply with current wastewater effluent quality regulations and standards.
Siksika First Nation received $2.1 million for its Arthur A. Youngman Water Treatment Plant Raw Water Wells Project. The funding will allow for the construction of two new water wells for the First Nation to provide a stable source of water to the treatment plant.
The federal government contributed about $1.6 million to the project, the province about $509,000, and Siksika about $16,500.
And the Town of Coaldale received about $3.1 million toward Phase 2B of the Malloy Drainage Project to repurpose abandoned raw water reservoirs into additional stormwater storage, as well as construction of a new wetland with fore bay and a new bio-swale with a pump station to direct stormwater from the south wetland into the reservoirs.
The Town contributed about $825,000 to fund the project, the province chipped in just over $1 million, and the federal government put in just over $1.2 million.
Coaldale Mayor Kim Craig said completing Phase 2B of the Malloy drainage basin will have a major impact on the community.
“By recommissioning the old raw water lagoons we have in town will really increase our capacity to deal with stormwater,” he said. “Early in my mayorship we realized in order to go forward we had to be proactive in dealing with stormwater, and so the Town of Coaldale, together with Alberta Environment, Lethbridge County and the St. Mary River Irrigation District, all came together to come up with a master plan on how to handle the stormwater in the Malloy basin, and, in particular, the area that directly impacts Coaldale.”
Craig said prior to the first work on the Malloy project being completed the Town had effectively reached its maximum development capacity.
“At one point earlier in my term of office Coaldale was under a moratorium for development because we didn’t have any workable solutions for managing stormwater,” Craig stated. “Over my years in office, working with various partners and levels of government, we have been able to aggressively attack some of these issues where we have been able to move forward with development.”
However, Craig said, Monday’s funding announcement would have the greatest single positive impact on Coaldale as far as the stormwater work done thus far goes.
“This will give Coaldale a solution for many years to come,” he confirmed, “and I think we can handle something 500 cubic metres of water once these two lagoons are recommissioned. This (2B Phase) is really Coaldale-centric in its development to manage overland flows of water during storm events, and retain it until we can properly release it into the system.”
Craig expects Phase 2B to be completed by 2022 at the latest.
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