The best site for a proposed collector well has been determined to be on city-owned land next to the Fraser River and southwest of Kelleher Street. Google map image

The best site for a proposed collector well has been determined to be on city-owned land next to the Fraser River and southwest of Kelleher Street. Google map image

After first bid fails, Abbotsford & Mission to ask feds again for millions for new water source

Municipalities plan to build a new collector well along Fraser River to meet long-term water needs

Six months after learning that its last bid for federal and provincial money to help pay for its planned $85 million collector well, Abbotsford and Mission are taking another stab at landing a large government grant.

The two municipalities plan to build a collector well for about $85 million to increase their water supply over the coming decades. Although water usage in the two municipalities has remained level in recent years, analyses have predicted the two growing municipalities will eventually need more water.

The collector well would supply on the heaviest-demand days from the present 123 million litres per day (MLS), to about 148 MLD, with a 25 MLD expansion possible if and when further demand requires.

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Abbotsford and Mission applied to the federal and provincial government last year for funding from the “Green Infrastructure, Environmental Quality Program.” But so did hundreds of other municipalities, and Abbotsford and Mission were unable to get a slice of the $243 million doled out by the federal and provincial governments.

But some hope remains.

The two governments are accepting proposals for $150 million in additional grants, and Abbotsford and Mission are planning to apply again. To succeed, the project must show that it increases access to potable water, increases the ability to treat or manage wastewater and stormwater, or allows for the reduction and remediation of soil and or air pollution.

The collector well, which would be located next to the Fraser River, would draw groundwater from the elevated water table. That water would then be treated on site before being pumped to residents in Abbotsford and Mission.

Staff say the project would increase access to potable water and would boost supply resiliency and support growth in the two communities.

Abbotsford residents currently enjoy full access to potable water. But the city’s application will focus on the potential to meet future demand, as well as the addition of one more water source that would allow the city to cope in the event an existing source goes off-line.

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