Water tower rehabs gain favour, Iroquois most in need

Morrisburg water tower – File photo

SOUTH DUNDAS – The Iroquois water tower is most in need of attention and it needs to come soon.

Brouco Services provided South Dundas council with the results of inspections of the municipality’s two water towers at the November 4 council meeting.

While both towers are structurally sound, both are going to need significant repairs and restoration to extend their lifespans.

According to Brouco’s report, the Iroquois tower is most critically in need of work.

While Morrisburg’s tank had undergone significant access upgrades prior to amalgamation, the Iroquois tank has not had those same upgrades.

Along with improved access to allow work on the tank, the Iroquois tower is in immediate need of a new tank lining which carries an estimated cost of $335,000. That’s just phase one. The second phase, which can wait 2-3 years, addresses the exterior of the water tower at an estimated cost of $640,000.

The Brouco report showed that the Morrisburg tower is structurally sound and there are no significant issues with the tank. But, the tank will need to be re-lined in about three years time. That first phase of the Morrisburg tank rehabilitation will cost about $289,000 according to the report with the second exterior renovation phase following in about five years time with a price tag of $645,000.

A couple of years ago the municipality applied unsuccessfully for funding to build one new water tower to service both villages. At that time the estimated cost of that project was $2.6 million.

With this new report, it seems that the one new tower option is falling out of favour. Water and wastewater supervisor Dennis Villeneuve told council that he firmly believes keeping both towers is the best option. He previously worked in a municipality that downsized from two towers to one and said. “It’s a nightmare going from two towers to one.”

Water aging and the control over chlorine levels are among the problems he listed with the one tower model. He added that it’s better to have two towers to continue to provide service during water breaks and that the tanks are important for fire protection in each village as well.

Villeneuve said he would recommend going forward with phase one of the Iroquois tower rehabilitation right away, budget for phase two at Iroquois and seek funding if and when it’s available for the Morrisburg tower rehabilitation. “Two million dollars is a lot of money but if we do that, then the towers are good for 30 years,” said Villeneuve.

Chief administrative officer Shannon Geraghty said that he would look into funding opportunities for this rehabilitation project.

Note: This article was modified from the print edition to correct the spelling of Brouco Services.

Since you’re here…

… Thanks for reading this article. Local news is important. We hope that you continue to support local news by reading The Leader, online and in print. Please consider subscribing to the print edition of the newspaper. Click here to subscribe today.