Early opening anticipated for water treatment plant

Mara water facility expected to be completed end of October.

Sicamous’ days of water quality advisories are numbered.

While it was anticipated the district’s new Mara water treatment facility would be completed by the end of the year, project manager Jean Lambert says plant is now expected to be operational by the end of October.

In a presentation to council, Lambert, of MHPM Project Managers Inc., said the plant is on budget with the majority of construction complete and associated risks behind.

“We did have some incidents at the beginning of the project,” said Lambert. “We solved everything and fixed everything within the contingency. I know sometimes, for people who are not used to it, it’s a bit scary when these things happen, but we see it all the time… we expect it. But I’m happy to say this is all done, it’s behind us and we’re still on schedule.”

While $833,000 was budgeted for that contingency, the amount was reduced early on by about $600,000 after the district accepted the $6.6 million bid by Maple Reinders Inc. to construct the plant (the construction cost had been estimated at $6 million). With cost reductions found by postponing/eliminating certain works, such as the proposed waste settlement ponds (about $110,000), the contingency currently sits at about $300,000. Lambert said that could still shrink by another $235,000, but only if everything that can go wrong does, which he considered unlikely.

Asked about the warranty on the filtration membrane technology used in the facility, Lambert was unable to provide specifics but said the provider, GE, hope to showcase the project.

 

“What that means is if you need service, I would be quite surprised if you don’t get good service from GE, because they want you to have a good experience,” said Lambert. “They want this to be a successful project. So if you have an issue with a membrane, I can’t predict the future, but I would think they would step up to the plate.”