The Town of Strathmore has approved the construction of a permanent snow dump location, as well as an access roadway in the Pivot Fields, east of Range Road 251.

Council approved the development during the special meeting of council, July 26, as an effort to safeguard the local environment from the annual impacts of snow melt.

The new location will serve as a permanent, long-term solution for the snow and ice removal from Strathmore’s roads during the winter months. The necessity behind the development is due to snow melt containing salts and other contaminants which are noted as harmful to the environment. 

“We experienced an abnormal and challenging winter this past season. We realized that our current snow dump didn’t have the structural capacity to meet the needs of the community moving forward – especially if we continue to see conditions like we did last season,” said Donna McCallum, operations manager for the Town of Strathmore. “The newly designed snow dump will protect the environment from meltwater contaminants for decades to come.”

The snow dump is noted by the town to be in alignment with its strategic plan, as it is considered a contribution to environmental sustainability. 

Council has approved the use of $90,000 from the financial stabilization reserve to complete the construction of the snow dump, as well as the access road leading to it. 

Ethan Wilson, manager of infrastructure for the Town of Strathmore, said the development has been approved by Alberta Environment, as the facility design meets designated guidelines required for a snow disposal facility designation.

“When I was here in front of council a couple of months ago, we discussed that we were looking into a permanent solution, however, at that time the costs were not known,” he said. “Since then, we have been granted a snow disposal facility designation from Alberta Environment, which means that we are allowed to build this snow dump in the location that we have requested and then we have been working with a local contractor to determine the most efficient way to construct this snow dump so that it would be appropriate for what the use is, and we can access it properly 12 months of the year.”

The facility is also expected to be suitable for handling of melt water in the spring once the weather begins to warm.

A development contract was awarded immediately, with shovels expected to hit the ground “within the next couple of weeks.” No exact date was given during the council meeting.

By John Watson, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Original Published on Aug 02, 2023

This item reprinted with permission from   Strathmore Times   Strathmore, Alberta

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