The Hammersley Station Flood Box project received full approval from the mayor and council on Monday night, despite concerns that the plan is less than ideal and the cost is almost twice as high as proposed.
The project could cost as much as $625,000, up $330,000 from the original cost as presented by Opus DaytonKnight in a review put forward in 2012. That shortfall will be covered by the Community Works Gas Tax fund, which Judy Lewis, finance manager, said has enough funds currently to cover the overrun.
“I’m kind of disappointed in Opus Dayton Knight,” said Coun. Dwayne Post. “They knew for a long time what the project was and they estimated it in half.”
There were several items listed in a new report that were thought to be previously unknown, including the existence of sheet pile in the construction area.
“How did they not know sheet pile was there?” Post asked. “I knew there was sheet pile there.”
Coun. Holger Schwichtenberg said he also was reluctant to approve the project, for the same reasons, and Mayor John Van Laerhoven noted that “there seems to be a lot of local knowledge that has not been totally respected.”
But Van Laerhoven approved the go-ahead of the construction, through Jake’s Contracting, because of the amount of work, resources and money already spent on the project.
The flood box is hoped to help alleviate flooding in the local area, however several residents who regularly attend council meetings have expressed concern with the project from the start.
Some would like the flood box constructed lower than planned. However, to be upgraded at all, the plans had to meet stringent requirements through the Department of FIsheries, said the mayor.