Princeton has more plumbing woes

Council hopes grants will fund the fixes

When it comes to its plumbing, Princeton has nearly a million dollars worth of new – or old – problems.

At a recent meeting council voted to make a major grant application to address a number of sewage concerns.

Infrastructure director Jamie Umpleby said in an interview with The Spotlight that the town’s sewer lagoons need to be aerated to reduce odor and improve decompression.

Also, two pipes running under the Silkameen and Tulameen Rivers must to be assessed to determine their reliability.

“We need to know if they are in good condition. There could be anything. There could be leaks and they could need replacing.”

Other sewers need to be replaced as they are at capacity and some of that work is necessary in order to support projected development for Princeton’s north end, he said.

“Princeton really can’t have a lot of growth unless some of these deficiencies are addressed.”

Total cost for the three projects is estimated at $844,515. An application under the Canada-British Columbia Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program is hoped to cover 73 per cent of the cost, leaving the town to come up with $225,232 to complete the jobs.

As part of the motion to approve the application process, council authorized staff to spend that money, should the grant be received.

Regardless of how it is funded the work needs to be done, said Umpleby.

Without the grant “we’ve got some money in the budget and we’d have to address things one by one. “

Related: Princeton is leaking – and it’s a serious issue

Last week The Spotlight reported Princeton’s water system is also in need of upgrades.

Princeton consumes 1,429 litres of water per capita per day, a number that includes industrial, commercial, seasonal usage and leakage or unaccounted for water.

The B.C. average is 494 litres.

“It’s a significant issue,” said Umpleby. “We are paying for power to pump the water and we are paying for chemicals for chlorination.”

According to the report, the town maintains and supplies 45 km of watermain to approximately 1,359 individual services, at an annual cost of approximately $400,000.

This year the town has budgeted to purchase leak detection equipment at an estimated cost of $120,000.

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