Downtown Infrastructure Replacement program approved

The City of Lacombe’s downtown core will look relatively different in 2017.

HISTORIC - The City of Lacombe will be undertaking the Downtown Infrastructure Replacement Program with construction beginning in 2017. Construction-related impacts on historic buildings along 50th Ave. and the downtown core will be mitigated.

The City of Lacombe’s downtown core will look relatively different in 2017.

Council approved the Downtown Infrastructure Replacement Program earlier this week.

The program scheduled for 2017 includes entering into an engineering services agreement with Stantec for a preliminary analysis and design at the cost of $303,334.

“This project traverses the downtown core of Lacombe, which contains a number of historical buildings that provide a unique aesthetic appearance and a vibrant sense of community,” said Director of Planning and Operations Matthew Goudy. “Council has reviewed and approved Stantec’s proposal for a design that complements the existing historical context of the area and ensures any potential construction-related impacts on downtown Lacombe are mitigated.”

An investigation was undertaken in 2015 on the condition of the sanitary sewers along 50th Ave. and it was found the existing pipe was degraded and required replacement. As such, the upcoming repairs are viewed as an ‘emergency’ and ‘imminent’ by the City.

The area to be covered in the downtown core includes 50th Ave. between the west side of 53rd St. to the west side of Hwy. 2A. The project includes not only the replacement of the sanitary sewer along 50th Ave. but also consideration for watermain replacement, repairing damaged concrete, replacing the existing road structure along with incorporating the previously completed design work for 49C Ave. (watermain replacement and ‘streetscaping’).

The staging of the project will be spread over a two year period beginning in 2016 with a design, followed by construction in 2017.

Council wanted to ensure access to all businesses in the affected area was maintained during the construction period.

“This process is a little different than our typical Capital Works program because we are expecting a much higher level of consultation with the impacted stakeholders,” Goudy said. “We want to make sure we do this once and get it right.”

Councillor Grant Harder stated he had concerns that ‘extras’ would be added onto the project.

“I view this as emergency measures,” he said. “To add decorative bulbs, decorative sidewalks and landscaping, I’m just afraid this is one of the those things that is starting to balloon out of control again.”

Goudy stated the current scope of the proposed project remains to address the deficient infrastructure.

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