Assessing the meeting
Gander residents attend information session on new sewage treatment plant
Gander residents attend information session on new sewage treatment plant.
To provide residents with a stronger sense of what’s happening with the proposed wastewater treatment facility, and to pay its due diligence in moving forward with registering the required environmental, the Town of Gander held a public information session.
On March 28 approximately 12 residents, along with town councillors and employees sat in on the meeting, headed up by Greg Sheppard, a civil engineer with CBCL Limited – the engineering firm contracted for the project, and Melissa Rutherford, CBCL environmental scientist.
“We look at what kind of changes or effects that it could have on the environment,” said Rutherford. “We do a pretty thorough assessment of endangered species in the area, how the project is being constructed and when were constructing it, how it’s going to be done. Having mitigation measures in place to make sure we are putting together a project that’s environmentally sound.”
After the document has been submitted to the Department of Environment for registration, it goes through review, which could take up to 45 days in total.
The idea is to establish a design-build format, in which CBCL designs the project, lines up contractors through a tendering process, then beginnings the building phase.
Potential contactors have now been short listed to four. The aim is to have ground broken on the new project this fall.
The specifications for the new facility are still being prepared, with the treated wastewater being discharged into Whitman’s Pond. How the affluent will be handled is still under consideration.
Sid Small lives near Magee Road and he’s more than excited that a new facility is going to alleviate the less than pleasant odors that have been coming from the current facility.
“I was more or less looking for a timeline, to monitor the progress,” he said. “You’ve got a new school opening with more than 400 kids, new development taking place, so I’m hoping it can be completed sooner rather than later.”
Overall he’s pleased with the amount of progress that has been made.
But Small does have some concern surrounding the project, in going through the environmental process, there’s a lot of red tape before the project gets signed off on.
And given the current need for upgrades in Gander, he’s hoping the government channels for finalizing the project can be expedited.
The square next to Whitman’s Pond is where the new wastewater treatment facility for the Town of Gander will be located.