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19th October 2020
RDN targets grants for major projects in Nanoose Bay, French Creek and Whiskey Creek

Official says projects have a strong chance to be approved for cash

MICHAEL BRIONES Oct. 18, 2020 4:40 p.m. LOCAL NEWS

The Regional District of Nanaimo is applying for grants to help bring down the cost of four major infrastructure projects.

The committee of the whole, at its meeting on Oct. 13, passed a recommendation that the RDN board endorse four projects for submission to the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program.

The projects are the $1.5-million Nanoose Bay Pump Station and Forcemain Upgrade; $1-million French Creek Pollution Centre Expansion and Odour Control Project Sustainable Technologies; the $800,000 Whiskey Creek Community Water Supply Upgrade; and $270,000 Duke Point Pollution Control Centre Ultraviolet Disinfection Upgrade.

Manager of wastewater services, Sean De Pol, said all four projects have a strong chance to be approved for the grants.

The Nanoose Bay, Whiskey Creek and Duke Point projects are eligible for possible grants under the ICIPís Rural and Northern Communities Infrastructure Grant Program while the French Creek project falls under the ICIPís Climate Change Mitigation-CleanBC Communities Grant Program.

The Nanoose Bay wastewater lift stations have been operating for more than 30 years and require major upgrades to replace worn and corroding piping, valves, pump electrical and control infrastructure.

Whiskey Creek, currently under Stage 4 water restrictions due to high turbidity in its water supply, has been experiencing difficulties in establishing a reliable source of drinking water. A groundwater well was developed in 2019 and this year engineering for a system to utilize the water is being completed. But the funding allocated to the project is only sufficient to build a temporary system to treat and use the water supply. The plan is to make them secure and permanent by building a transmission main from the well to the reservoir.

The French Creek Pollution Control Centre needs grants for sustainable technologies that would include installation of a heat exchange system to reduce natural gas consumption and solar panels for the generation of renewable energy.

The Duke Point Pollution Control Centreís ultraviolet disinfection system requires replacement to continue to process treated effluent from wastewater treatment plant.

Area E director Bob Rogers supported the longstanding projects.