The Town of Whitecourt is continuing with its Water System Upgrade project, awarding a contract last week for Part B of the project.
The Water System Upgrade project is comprised of a dedicated feed to the Hilltop Reservoir, which is Contract A, and upgrades to the main pump house, which is Contract B.
The project aims to separate the water distribution system into two independent zones, ensuring there is water supply to the community in the event of an emergency or system failure.
Specifically, Contract A – the dedicated feed line – will increase the redundancy of the water supply and provide the piping infrastructure necessary to separate into pressure zones. It will also enable future growth in the Hilltop area, with the potential to install a regional feed to the east and south of Whitecourt.
Contract B – the pump house upgrades – will create a low-pressure zone in the lower townsite area, and a high-pressure zone connecting to the Hilltop Reservoir. The low operating pressure zone will reduce water consumption and decrease the potential for leakages in the water distribution system. The high-pressure zone will feed the Hilltop Reservoir ensuring water supply can be reliably maintained during an emergency and also provides the ability for Whitecourt to become a regional water supplier.
The Town says these components will meet the objectives of the 2014 Whitecourt Water Master Plan, including improved fire flow in West Whitecourt, enhanced control of the Hilltop Reservoir, and increased resiliency of the water supply.
Mayor Maryann Chichak says the project is two-thirds funded by the Building Canada Small Communities Fund, which provided $6,720,000 for the project.
Council awarded Contract A’s tender in September for $3,240,578. Last week at their regular meeting of Council, Contract B’s tender was awarded to Alpha Construction Inc. for $997,000 plus GST.
Mayor Chichak says the two contracts came in under budget, so there is still $1.4 million in grant funding available to use. Town Administration will investigate if the leftover funding can be used to extend the work under Contract A from the current connection at Dahl Drive to the bottom of Eastlink Winter Park and the Hilltop Reservoir.