Shelburne Council investigating upgrades to sewer plant

·3 min read

The Town of Shelburne could see upgrades in the near future to its sewage treatment plant as reports from Town staff show a shortage in capacity with new developments.

Shelburne Town council received the report on the sewage capacity allocation from Jim Moss, director of development and operations for the town, during their meeting on Monday (March 22).

“This report and the accompanying analysis have confirmed that there is not enough sufficient allocation for all the development that’s out there, of what’s being requested. This will not be possible to service without upgrading the sewage treatment plant, so we can’t accommodate everybody unless we have those upgrades done,” Moss told councillors.

According to the report given to Council, the cost for the project is estimated to be quite significant, between $26 million and $33 million.

Following the outline of the report from Moss, Town Planner Steve Wever provided councillors with the Town’s staging of development plan. The official staging plan helps provide direction on allocating and reserving servicing capacity when there is more demands for capacity than is available.

“What we have right now is very clearly a lot more demand than remaining capacity, and we’ve known for some time that we were going to reach that point,” said Wever.

In the updated staging plan there are currently 540 residential units and 1.93 hectors of industrial, commercial or institutional (ICI) allocated. Developments in the town allocated include Hyland Village, the residential portion of Fieldgate, the Stone Ridge Holdings, the new plaza located at the north end of Shelburne, the Ice Rive Springs facility, and the Blue Mountain Plastics development.

“There is quite a bit of development committed and approved, so we have to make sure that servicing is maintained for those developments,” said Wever.

Future developments in the proposal process show 572 more residential units and 9.56 hector for ICIs in demand.

Wever said with the demand for future proposals there is a major shortfall, urging the need for an expansion on the waste water plant.

Stephen Burnett, the municipality’s contracted engineer, presented council with the details of the current sewage treatment plants capacity.

Burnett brought to council’s attention that the peaking usage number for 2020 is only a few hundred cubic metres below the peak capacity of the treatment plant.

Burnett in his presentation to council agreed with both Wever and Moss that the sewage treatment plant does not have sufficient capacity to allocate for additional developments.

Coun. Walter Benotto following the report asked how long upgrades to the sewage plant woud take.

Burnett said it would be approximately a year of design and an estimated two years of construction.

One concern brought up by councillors following the presentation from staff was being able to allocate capacity for a senior housing development in the works with Flato Development, a priority project flagged by Council. Earlier in the meeting, council received a request from Flato Development to allocate sewage capacity for the senior’s housing development and an ICI development.

The possibility of re-allocating capacity from some developments to others was addressed by council. A special meeting will be scheduled to discuss capacity with other developers prior to the end of April.

Paula Brown, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Shelburne Free Press