Cranbrook applying for infrastructure grants

If successful, grants will go towards road program and Joseph Creek revitalization plan.

Following the success of the $10 million AAP approval, Cranbrook council is beginning to chase down government grants in order to help pay for the reconstruction of 2nd Street.

City council is giving the go-ahead to apply for just under $2 million from the Clean Water and Wastewater Fund, a pool of federal and provincial dollars administered by the Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development.

According to a city report, the reconstruction of 2nd St., including the replacement of underlying infrastructure from Highway 3/95 to 10th Ave, and resurfacing from 10th Ave to 14th Ave, is expected to cost $6.1 million.

According to a city staff report, 2nd St. South is identified as a very high priority for replacement due to risk and likelihood of failure of infrastructure.

“2nd Street South contains an aging water distribution main and sanitary sewer collection main, as well as a large diameter storm sewer main that has sections that are failing and significantly undersized,” reads the report. “Failure of these major underground utility lines would result in significant risk from a water quality and health standpoint as well as flooding and further damage to property and infrastructure.”

Councillor Tom Shypitka noted that he heard feedback from the public during the AAP process that the city should pursue government grants instead of borrowing $10 million.

“I know there were some questions and concerns from the public during the AAP process that we should be going after funding instead of borrowing and this is an example that we do those things anyways,” Shypitka said.

Mayor Lee Pratt noted that regardless of whether the city gets the grant or not, the 2nd St. South project will move forward.

“There’s no guarantee that we can get it, but if we do, that’s a bonus,” Pratt said.

In addition to the 2nd St. South project, city council also directed staff to apply for a $53,950 grant from the same CWWF fund to go towards the Joseph Creek Urban Stream Management Plan. The plan is under development to address issues such as habitat degradation, ecological impacts, water quality concerns, flooding and damage to property and park spaces.

The plan is being developed by local experts and a collaboration between other stakeholders, community groups and government agencies to find solutions to multi-faceted and multi-jurisdictional issues.

The plan is expected to cost up to $65,000. If the grant is not approved, the city already has the cost anticipated in their annual budget.