City capital projects top $10 million for 2013

Projects include $2.8 million on roads and $1.7 million on the spray irrigation site.

Cranbrook city council approved $10 million in capital projects in 2013. This included $2.8 million on roads and $1.7 million on the spray irrigation site.

Chris Zettel, the city’s corporate communications officer, looked back on the year of projects in a presentation that can be found on the city’s website.

In terms of the road program, the city continued the third part of construction on 14th Avenue South, this year focusing on 14th Avenue from 13th Street to 17th Street South. The work began in 2011. It included improvements to storm sewers, gutters and the addition of bioswales and a multiuse path, as well as paving and LED street lighting.

There was also work done on Kootenay Avenue, as well as a highway frontage road.

Work on the frontage road included reconstruction with stormwater system improvements, sanitary sewer extension installation, curved gutters and landscaping.

One of the largest projects and probably the most visual was the Elizabeth Lake entrance, which includes the large sculpture/sign as you drive into Cranbrook. That project also included landscaping, picnic table installation and paving.

The problems at the spray irrigation site were costly. The header pipe repair happened at the site in two spots.

“The first repair consisted in the relining of about 1,600 feet of 30 inch diameter steel header pipe at a location about two kilometres from the location of the irrigation pump station,” Zettel said. “This was relined. It inserted a continuous fused pipe of a slightly smaller diameter.”

That repair cost $350,000.

The second leak in the suction piping happened underneath the irrigation pump station.

“It was very challenging,” he said. “They needed to do open cut excavation, directional drilling, some mining techniques to essentially bypass the section of the pipe.”

The $650,000 repair will last in excess of 100 years, Zettel said.

Public works staff designed and completed the fountain in front of Cranbrook fire hall. It is designed to look like the Maltese cross firefighters wear on their shirts.

In September, public works utility crews worked to remove substantial amounts of gravel from a large diameter trunk sanitary sewer main that brings sewage to the north end of the city. A bridge across Joseph’s Creek had to be installed to allow machines to get across to the problem.

“Obstructions to the pipe weren’t allowing it to flow freely,” he said. Once inside, he said crews found that between half and three-quarters of the pipe was full of soils which was limiting the flow into the lagoons.

Crews also had to lower wastewater levels in the first of the three ponds. Zettel said the crews had to modify a large concrete vault and install three new large diameter manholes in an area with high ground water.

To clear the pipes they used a high pressure hose that has a nozzle that propels it forward through the sediment as it blasts out debris.

There was also a $60,000 repaving of the medivac and charter aircraft loading area at the Canadian Rockies International Airport. The project was done in June.

Another project was the reconstruction of the Mount Baker tennis courts. It was initiated by School District 5 and also was financially supported by Columbia Basin Trust.

Mayor Wayne Stetski said it was great to see all the work that the city’s staff has accomplished over the year.

Coun. Diana J. Scott said it was a great synopsis of where the taxpayer’s money goes.

“It takes a lot of time and creativity,” she said. “There’s a lot of creativity there to solve those types of problems.”