By Cole Parkinson
With the calendar turning to fall, the Municipal District of Taber is looking at various different projects that will begin over the next few months.
During the director of infrastructure’s report at the M.D. council’s regular meeting on August 28, council were given updates on a bunch of different projects.
Work with Alberta Environment and Parks were given updates on two different projects ongoing.
“We’re still working on the Alberta Community Resiliency Program, a job which is the Township 8 Range Storm-water Drainage project,” said Craig Pittman, director of infrastructure for the M.D. of Taber.
The Township 8 project is still in the initial design stage in regard to drainage and road build as well as the wetland portion of the project.
The other project revolved around the M.D. speaker gravel pit.
“The activities plan is updated and in place for them with the mandatory requirements,” added Pittman.
There was a quick update on the project as Reeve Brian Brewin had received a phone call prior to the start of the meeting.
“They have drafted together the conveyance agreement. I was hoping it would have been here last week but we still have some hiccups with it but it’s in the final few days,” he said.
The M.D. is also working with Alberta Transportation on numerous projects that have different scopes of work attached to them.
One of the more high profile projects starting up this week is the Highway 3 and Highway 864 intersection traffic lights.
“We had a project start-up meeting two weeks ago. On the Friday after the September long weekend is when they are looking to get construction going on that,” stated Pittman.
The project is a partnership between the M.D of Taber, Alberta Transportation and the Town of Taber, though the scope of the project also includes lighting at the intersection of Highway 3 and Range Road 17-1 at the full cost of the M.D.
Coun. John Turcato inquired about potentially adding another project to the scope of the Highway 3/864 work.
After hearing reports about the turning lane south from Highway 36 to west on Highway 3 not having enough lane acceleration for heavy loads, Turcato brought up the concern to council.
“With the way it is now, it’s a tough job to make that turn,” he added.
Pittman, though, said that type of work would fall to a different project and with Highway 3 being resurfaced in the near future, he said that could potentially be added.
“That is something we can speak to them about and give some input,” explained Pittman.
The Highway 36 Vauxhall Rest Area has also seen some advancements as preliminary design and cost estimates have been completed.
Council questioned whose responsibility it would be for maintenance in the rest area, which Pittman stated that it would be the M.D. who would do bathroom maintenance and snow removal.
Four bridge files are on tap to be completed throughout the rest of the year and into next year.
Bridge file 80259, which was funded by the Strategic Transportation Infrastructure Program is nearing completion.
Bridge file 80155/Bow River Irrigation District drop 5 is nearing the start of construction, with it estimated to begin sometime in October as both the BRID and M.D. of Taber have signed off on the documents.
“They have to do it when the irrigation waters are off, so it’s likely to start in late October and completion prior to when irrigation waters are back on,” explained Pittman.
Bridge file 79921 was delayed due to the overland flooding and bridge file 80046 is targeting an early spring construction period before irrigation waters are turned on.
M.D. of Taber internal work includes the M.D. campus and local road design and preparation.
In regard to the campus, Pittman stated the gravel is mainly done and the security fencing contractor would be on site within the next few weeks to do work.
While most of the office type items are in the facility, most of the equipment hasn’t been moved yet.
“A little hesitant to move a bunch of equipment over until we do get the security fencing in place,” said Pittman.
Local road design, meanwhile, the report states they are ‘working with a consultant to finalize design drawings and individual ownership plans.’
Contract workers will be incredibly busy throughout the M.D. as construction on various projects, including the Hays and Grassy Lake surfacing improvements, sees work beginning in September.
Hays and Grassy Lake water plan backup generators are estimated to be completed by early October and the Enchant industrial lot servicing sees construction begin in September.
Meanwhile, the regional walking trail project has already started construction.
With most of the flood-related contractor projects already completed, the M.D. is still waiting for the completion of two remaining projects.
The road repair/rebuild on Range Road 19-0, south of Highway 521 began construction on August 20 while pipe bore/grout and abandon existing on Township Road 11-0, east of Highway 35 has a deadline completion date of October 31.
Two engineering studies are scheduled and they include the Grassy Lake sanitary sewer system capacity and the Stafford Lake Resort drainage improvement.
The report states the Grassy Lake study ‘consultant is nearing completion of an assessment of the existing sanitary sewer infrastructure including pipe size, lift station, capacity and sewage treatment facility.’
The study also requires an evaluation on if there is capacity to expand the residential areas without grading the two lift stations which are currently operating on both the north and south side.
M.D. of Taber council has approved a consultant and the study will begin shortly.
The report was accepted as information.