Friday, August 30, 2013

Why Did Colliery Dam Get So Damn Complicated?

 Time To Just Get On With It!

We are now ten months and nearly $1 million into the ongoing Colliery Dam Park dams saga and seem no closer to conclusion than this time last year.

In 2010 the city hired an engineering company to do a seismic assessment of the dams, and one of the options they presented was to rehab both dams to a 1:3000 year safety standard for an estimated amount of less than $3 million. This conclusion was based on the assumption that the dams contained no rebar, were made of poor concrete and were possibly not on bedrock.

Since that finding in 2010 nothing has changed except for the new knowledge that the dams are made with good concrete, are on bedrock and in fact contain rebar about twice the size of that in current use. The other wild card was the arbitrary decision by the Dam Safety Section of the provincial government to increase the standard for the dams to a 1:10000 year safety standard.

Given this is three times the standard required for our hospital it seems totally 'over the top' and is a bit of a head-shaker looking for the logic.

We are now engaged in another round of never ending discussions with yet another engineer to find a long term mitigation solution to this over-stated risk. Why in the world are we not simply saying to the province a 1:3000 year safety standard is an acceptable level of risk and propose that is our solution to the problem at a cost of about $3 million and if the province insists on a higher standard, they should pick up the tab.

Enough time and effort has been spent on this ridiculous 'problem' and city staff and the community have far better things to be concerned about than these two little ponds and the exaggerated risk they pose.


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