Barriere road repair to be completed in mid-May

District council received report from engineer on state of wastewater project and road repair

At Monday night’s District of Barriere council meeting, council approved the erection of signage on Barriere Town Road that will inform people about the improvements happening with respect to the wastewater project, including the proposed date of completion.

The district’s engineer, Dave Underwood from TRUE Consulting, prepared a report for council which reassured them that the contract with LNB for the collection system provided sufficient protection for the district and that after recent discussions with the contractor he felt confident they would complete the job to design specifications, and anticipate the roads will be paved mid-May.

Underwood explained that video inspections undertaken in late December 2014 indicated several deficiencies with respect to the gravity sewer aspect of this project, mostly related to grade and that the most likely explanation is inadequate compaction of the pipe bedding material.

TRUE Consulting undertakes random and periodic inspections during construction and did not notice any shortcuts being taken; although they are not on-site full time.

In this regard, there was some discussion regarding whether the hiring of a full time project manager, at an added cost, would have had an influence on the status of construction.

In TRUE’s opinion, this additional person would not have resulted in any significant  difference  in terms of quality of construction as completed by LNB and would have a substantial additional cost. The report stated that TRUE and the district cannot dictate how a project should be completed to the contractor; saying they cannot tell them how to do their job.  It is the contractor’s responsibility to complete the project in accordance with design and specification.

As part of this contract the district has retained a 10 per cent holdback on all work.

District CAO Colleen Hannigan says they are “very much protected” in terms of the payment that has been made to date with respect to pipe installation.

She notes that testing of the gravity sewer involves multiple steps:

1) The pipe is flushed and video inspected.

2) A low-pressure air-test is performed to ensure competency.

3) Review of video inspection records to ensure compliance with contract specifications in terms of grade and integrity.

“The district’s acceptance of the installed infrastructure is not provided until test results confirm conformance with design and specification to tolerances outlined in the contract documents,” said the CAO.

She tells that in addition to the payment total made to date for installed sanitary sewer mains, the District of Barriere is further protected with the following bonding:

1) Performance Bond in the amount of 50 per cent of the Total Contract Sum; and,

2) Labour and Materials Payment Bond in the amount of 50 percent of the Total Contract Sum.

A Performance Bond is issued by a Surety to guarantee satisfactory completion of a project by a contractor.  A Labour and Materials Payment Bond is also issued by a Surety and guaranteed that the contractor will pay the labour and materials costs they are obliged to.

LNB is presently completing correction of the known pipe deficiencies and have informed TRUE that it will see this project to completion.

At this time TRUE says they see no reason why LNB will not fulfill its contractual obligations for this project.

The Septage Receiving Station (SRS) will soon be complete with the addition of an experimental Vortex aerator tested recently on site by Ipex, the company providing the unit.

Its purpose is to add air (dissolved oxygen) to the anaerobic septage prior to mixing it with the everyday aerobic wastewater, to lower the biochemical oxygen demand (BOD) on the wastewater plant and to help eliminate odor.

“Aeration is one of the primary components of all wastewater treatment and Barriere is being used as an opportunity for this company to develop and test a new product, at no cost to the district,” says Hannigan, “ Septage from private septic systems will not be able to be received by the SRS until the Wastewater plant itself is up and running.”

The main mechanical/office/custodial building of the Solar Aquatics Wastewater plant, as well as the chip storage is 90 per cent complete.

Expectations are the greenhouse fabricator will be out this coming week with all the wall trusses and purlins to install.  Then they will drill all the holes and install the column bolts.  Then they’ll book the crane and deliver the columns and roof in about 10 days or around April 26, including the catwalks for the electrical cable trays.

Hannigan says the objective is to have wastewater being accepted by the plant in early summer.

A further update on this project will be provided at the next District of Barriere council meeting on April 27.