Vanderhoof water extends west for fire suppression

Local businesses form a partnership to complete a municipal watermain project along the Highway 16, west of Silversmith Avenue

From left: Alan Fitzpatrick of The Nechako Group

From left: Alan Fitzpatrick of The Nechako Group

Local businesses have come together to form a partnership to complete a municipal watermain project along the Frontage Road that parallels Highway #16, west of Silversmith Avenue.

BC Hydro completed the first phase in 2015. The Nechako Group and Nechako Excavating will be pooling resources to extend water along the frontage road between the BC Hydro complex and Fountain Tire.

“We’re pleased to work with the community and other businesses to ensure our water supply for fire suppression of mill operations,” said Nechako Group’s CEO Alan Fitzpatrick.

The intent is to connect the low pressure water system that serves the downtown area with the high pressure system that is located on the hillside between 7th Street and Fountain Tire. That high pressure system, which provides both domestic and flows for fire protection is a dedicated line that serves the west end of our community along the highway corridor to L&M Lumber, Nechako Lumber, NGE and Premium Pellet.

Fire suppression is critical to the operation of the Nechako Group’s operation. In the event of a service disruption this new waterline will be able to redirect flows from the downtown system to our west end businesses.

This upgrade is equally important to Nechako Excavating, who owns the property immediately east of Fountain Tire. Municipal water will facilitate the further development of that property, which is currently zoned Light Industrial.

Both the Nechako Group and Nechako Excavating are sharing in the project costs. There will be no direct costs to the municipality.

“Basically done at no cost to taxpayers, this extension for fire protection ensures job protection in Vanderhoof,” said Mayor Gerry Thiessen.

This upgrade will also benefit properties on the north side of the tracks by providing an alternate source of water in the event of a service disruption.

Prior to allowing the passage of water from the high pressure zone to the lower downtown zone a pressure reducing station will need to be built. This station will allow the safe passage of water between zones by moderating the water pressures. To do otherwise may cause problems for individual plumbing systems on residential and business properties.

Construction, which is expected to commence the last week of July, will be undertaken by two local contractors, Nechako Excavating and M-4 Enterprises. The municipality will provide in-house engineering and inspection services throughout the anticipated two week construction schedule.