Wednesday, January 29, 2020

City Council approves near million dollar contract for sewage outfall study

An extensive review of the city's sewage outfall system will come at a cost
of near one million dollars

The next big film project for Prince Rupert City Hall will take staffers and council members deep into the heart of the city's sewage outfall system, the project part of the city's planning towards a waste water treatment facility at some point in the future.

The plan to map the city's sewage infrastructure was presented at Monday's City Council session as Council members approved the contract award for 995,000 dollars to McElhanney Engineering Consulting.

The City of Prince Rupert's Director of Operations Richard Pucci
outlined the nature of the project as part of the contract award on Monday

As part of his presentation on the night, Richard Pucci, the City's Director of Engineering provided  a short overview of the pertinent details towards the contract.

"As part of the City's obligations to meet the Federal wastewater regulations, the City must conduct an outfall study, this study is the most significant of all of the studies. And what it does is to looks at the condition assessment, flow monitoring and the collection of all other relevant data towards waste water.

 This was previously messaged to Council during the budget and was approved as a capital item, the operations department conducted an Open RFP process, that received one compliant bid from McElhanney Consulting Limited for 995,000 dollars. The Operations Department reviewed the proposal and we have a recommendation to proceed with the award" 

Following the project outline, the Director of Engineering entertained a number of questions from City Council members who made note of the near million dollar cost of the work ahead.

Councillor Niesh, asked for some background on the scope of the information on the wastewater system to be studied, while Councillor Mirau spoke to the cost of the work and what the city will be receiving from the work to be done.

In reply Mr. Pucci noted that the amount of the sewage outfall to be covered by the work would be approximately 60 percent of the wastewater system which is the largest catchment area for the City of Prince Rupert.

As well the Director outlined some background for the Councillors as to the mechanics of the city's current system and what the city will be looking for as part of the study.

Mr. Pucci observed that towards a timeline of the work required  to collect data from the volume of pipes in the city, the project will take close to a year.

Councillor Cunningham asked for an explanation as to how much of the city's outfall was to be covered by the project, as well as to if there are any grants available to help reduce the overall cost of the project that the Federal government has required of the City.

"We will be applying for grants as well, just because we're starting this doesn't mean that we still can't apply for grants, as we go on we are going to be applying for grants"

Mr. Pucci also addressed that theme in a follow up report and request for Council, which outlined the potential for some infrastructure funding opportunities towards the city's wastewater initiatives.

In that update, he noted that there was an opportunity for the city to apply for a Federation of Canadian Municipalities grant towards the study of the city's outflow system and its plans for a wastewater treatment facility.

"We can receive up to 80 percent  of funding, so we are looking to move forward with a study that will look at waste waster treatment feasibility within the City of Prince Rupert. And so we would like approval through a resolution to apply for this grant. Any monies that we get will just reduce the cost of feasibility studies moving forward.

Some further background on what the outfall project is all about can be found from our previous review of the original bid process below:

September 2019 -- City opens Request for Proposals process for Sewer Inspection project

You can review the two presentations on the theme from Monday night from the City's Video Archive starting at the one hour, sixteen minute mark.

For more items of interest related to Monday's Council session see our Council Timeline Feature here.

A wider overview of City Council Discussion themes can be explored here.

To return to the most recent blog posting of the day, click here.

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