Warfield has a little more wiggle room when it comes to sourcing a new municipal H2O provider.
“The Village of Warfield successfully negotiated a one-year extension to our water agreement with Teck to 2026,” Mayor Diane Langman said. “This allows the village some breathing room as we maneuver through some large discussions and assessments.”
Tapping into a new water supply is at the forefront for Warfield council because an agreement between the village and its longstanding water purveyor, Teck Metals Ltd., is slated to end in 2025.
The ending to this relationship led to a water feasibility study, or a broad-scope look at source alternatives, which carry with them price tags ranging from $500,000 to upwards of $4 million.
Langman, however, says council has narrowed the list down to two viable options worth consideration.
The first is a new Columbia River intake and the second, the least costly, is a connection to the City of Trail’s treated water system.
The village asked Trail leaders to consider the latter option earlier this year, though the matter is still under review.
“It was critical that the provision of bulk water would not negatively impact the city and its ratepayers or result in any incremental costs,” Langman explained. “In order to proceed with discussions, a capacity study needed to be undertaken. The city requested that due to the nature of the request that the village pay directly for all costs associated with completing the capacity study.”
The City of Trail, in co-operation with the Village of Warfield, obtained proposals from engineering consultants to complete this study and respective work by local firm Kerr Wood Leidal began in June.
Last week, the village, city staff, and the engineering firm met for the first time to go over a revised water supply feasibility proposal.
“Key points of the review included water demands for both communities, emergency scenarios and what infrastructure upgrades are required to address water supply and system interconnection,” Langman explained. “Confirmation of the work program, scope of services, expectations, current system challenges, goals and schedules were all discussed at this initiation meeting.”
With a budget of just over $32,000 to date, Langman says a draft report would be available in six to eight weeks.
“An exchange of information took place at this meeting and cost and schedules may be revised once more details are determined,” she clarified. “At that time the village will be in position to determine if the connection to the City of Trail treated water is feasible for water supply.”
Warfield council anticipates a final report of the capacity study this fall.
“The Village of Warfield expressed appreciation at the meeting that the City of Trail has taken the initiative to complete the capacity study,” Langman added. “And to determine what will be required if the city’s water system is capable of providing the village with water.”
Historically, Teck Metals has provided treated potable water to the village. A decade ago, the company put Warfield on notice that, by 2025, it would no longer be the water purveyor. In 2008, the two entities signed a water agreement that incrementally allowed Warfield to find a new treated source within 17 years.
The first two phases were completed by 2010, resulting in Teck supplying raw water to the village, with the municipality now owning and operating the water treatment plant.