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Engineer outlines plan for $7-million infrastructure project in Fort Macleod

sanitary system extension project

Dianne Young and Bob Moses look at one of the panels for the southwest water and sanitary system extension project in Fort Macleod.

MPE Engineering Ltd

Doug Mickey of MPE Engineering Ltd. (right) discusses the project with Lane McLaren and James Coast.

A $7-million Fort Macleod infrastructure project spanning four to five months will begin this spring.
MPE Engineering Ltd. outlined plans for the southwest water and sanitary system extension during an open house Wednesday at the Fort Macleod and District Community Hall.
“This is the first step in allowing future development in south Fort Macleod,” Doug Mickey of MPE Engineering Ltd. said.
Panels showing the scope of the project were displayed at the community hall during the open house.
Mickey also gave a formal presentation and answered questions from the people who turned out for the open house.
“What it’s going to provide us is an extension to the water system, and the sanitary system,” Mickey said of the project, which is funded through the federal Building Canada Fund.
The water system will extend from the southeast commercial industrial trunk that was put in for the now-defunct police college project.
The water system will be extended along Highway 3 from the former police college site and cross under Highway 2.
“Along the Eighth Street alignment we‘re going to extend it all the way to the west side of Fort Macleod to Sgt. Wilde Blvd.,” Mickey said.
Mickey explained that at strategic locations the water line will be tied to the existing distribution system in south Fort Macleod.
“What that’s going to do for the town, No. 1, it’s going to improve the reliability of the water system,” Mickey said. “It’s going to improve the flow, and the fire protection to that area.”
While there won’t be a noticeable change in water pressure, what residents will notice is that during times of peak demand the pressure will not drop as much as it does now.
“There’s more supply coming from multiple points,” Mickey said. “You should notice some improvement in flow, fire protection and generally water quality.”
The second part of the project is the sanitary sewer extension.
The line will again tie into the southeast commercial industrial trunk, follow Highway 3 and cross under Highway 2 and extend along Eighth Street west to Sgt. Wilde Blvd.
“This is going to be a deep trunk and what it’s going to do is No. 1, divert the flow from south Fort Macleod into that trunk and it’s going to make it to the waste water treatment plant,” Mickey said. “It’s going to take care of some capacity issues that exist in the main part of Fort Macleod, the area that’s north of Highway 3 that goes through town.”
Mickey explained that at present there are bottlenecks where flows converge during times of peak runoff.
Mickey said the project will also free sufficient capacity for development in west Fort Macleod in an area north and south of Highway 3 near Subway.
“We would be able to bring those flows through the town without causing any capacity issues,” Mickey said.
The $490,000 southwest drainage component was added on to the project to take advantage of economies of scale, Mickey explained, to address frequent ponding and flooding on Third and Fifth avenues.
“There are some catch basins in that area that after a storm event, they can’t take the water,” Mickey said. “They can’t introduce the water into the gravel fast enough so they sit there and pond for hours and maybe even days.”
Infiltration catch basins will be refurbished and connected into a system that has a perforated pipe.
“It’s going to provide a larger field for infiltration into the gravel,” Mickey said.
The system will be extended from 12th Street to Eighth Street on Third and Fifth avenues.
“In the future those lines will be tied into a storms water collection system and detention facility,” Mickey said.
Sixteen contractors applied to be prequalified for the project, which was to go to tender Friday and close March 22.
MPE Engineering Ltd. will bring a recommendation on a contractor to town council’s March 28 meeting.
Mickey said construction could start in mid to late April and the project should be done by the end of October.
The contractor will be required to develop a schedule of street closures and stay in contact with residents in the area.
A second open house will be held once the project starts so the contractor can address any concerns.
Mickey assured residents they will have access to the nearby horse paddocks.

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