Mayor Andrew Black says he’s happy the province has approved building a new $2.4 million aboiteau in Sackville’s industrial park to drain flood water into the Tantramar River.
“It’s the final step in completing one of the most ambitious and needed projects to protect downtown Sackville from major storms at a time when climate change will make them more likely,” Black said today. “I’m very pleased.”
The Tantramar mayor was referring to last week’s announcement that the provincial department of transportation and infrastructure (DTI) will install a new aboiteau in the dyke near Sackville’s main sewage lagoons.
“This project will replace the existing government-owned aboiteaux infrastructure with a new larger system to allow for the evacuation of inland flood waters captured behind the existing dykes that protect the town,” the announcement said.
It’s one of 73 projects worth a total of $47 million that the province is financing through its 2023/24 Climate Change Fund.
The $2.4 million is the last expenditure needed to complete the Lorne Street flood control project that began in 2017.
Aside from the latest announcement, all three levels of government have spent almost $13.9 million to protect Lorne Street and sections of downtown Sackville from fresh water flooding.
The project was designed in three phases:
Phase I aimed to stop flooding on Lorne Street by replacing and upgrading water, sewer lines and storm drainage systems as well as sidewalks, curbs and ditches.
Phase II was designed to retain storm water in a large 40,000 cubic metre pond south of St. James Street until it could be discharged into the Tantramar River at low tide. A second smaller pond, built and managed by Ducks Unlimited, also retains water. Both ponds serve as habitat for birds, animals and plants with walking trails around them for residents and visitors.
Phase III to be built in the coming months will feature another large retention pond behind the community gardens on Charles Street with culverts, pipes and ditches to carry stormwater to the new $2.4 million aboiteau in the Sackville industrial park. Walking trails will also be built around it. In addition, a retention pond is being built in the old Sackville quarry to control stormwater that flows down toward Lorne Street.
Tantramar Treasurer Michael Beal provided the following breakdown for the costs. He notes that the municipality did not need to borrow for its share of Phases I and II and will not likely have to borrow for Phase III either: