Abbotsford council has approved the spending of up to $200,000 from donated funds towards the cost of a fountain in Mill Lake.
The matter came before council at its executive meeting on Monday afternoon (April 12).
The city established a Mill Lake Park Reserve Fund in 2019 and received a commitment of a $1 million donation over 10 years from an anonymous donor for improvements to Mill Lake Park.
The first project approved was an aeration fountain to improve the water quality of the lake – and, thus, its ecosystem – and to provide “a beautiful esthetic addition to the city’s premier park,” says a city staff report.
The total cost of the project – including $70,000 for the fountain, $75,000 for power requirements and $21,000 for the installation – is approximately $200,000. Another $34,000 has been allocated as a contingency.
The proposed fountain will spray lake water 27 metres into the air and will have LED lighting to allow for colour changes, the staff report says.
“The preferred fountain will be highly visible from all areas of the park and will provide a spectacular display when lit up at night,” the report states.
“Colours of the fountain may be changed as desired, which would lend itself to having seasonal colours to support various community celebrations. The fountain selected can be expanded in the future with additional side fountains and water effects.”
The fountain will be on a timer, which will shut it off a night. The expected lifespan of the fountain is 15 years, with annual power costs estimated at $7,000 and yearly maintenance costs at $1,500.
The report indicates that the installation of the power and the fountain will temporarily impact park users as the route for the electrical will pass through the park and cross the walking path.
The electrical work is expected to take three to five days, and will require the closure of a small section of the walking path for one day. A temporary route will be available during this time, the report says.
Parks users will be alerted to this work via park signage, social media and the city website.
As well, the city will establish a policy to handle requests for seasonal and celebratory lighting of the fountain.
A request for proposals will now be issued.