Stakeholders met last week Monday to discuss the construction of the Irrigation Lake dam. They just got a construction permit and are pushing to start construction next Monday.

Irrigation Lake dam to be built September 29

Irrigation Lake stakeholders are calling for donations and volunteers to come together to build a new dam next week.

Irrigation Lake stakeholders are calling for volunteers to come together to help build a new dam next week.

With government approval and a construction permit granted Sept. 11, stakeholders are pushing for construction Sept. 29 to Oct. 3.

The old dam on the south end of Irrigation Lake was deemed a “potential safety hazard” by the Provincial Government in June 2013. They demanded that stakeholders bring the dam up to safety standards and find someone to take on the water licence, or else the dam would be torn out.

Stakeholders took action and in July 2013, with a $10,000 grant from the Bulkley Valley Credit Union, they hired an engineer to develop a design, which was completed last June.

The active stakeholders are Rough Acres Bible Camp, Rock Nest Ranch and Bells and Spooners (neighbours on the lake), as well as Ken Thomson and Steve Page.

Rough Acres Bible Camp and Rock Nest Ranch are working to each get a conservation water licence and share the responsibility and liability for the Irrigation Lake dam, said Wendall Garrison, Rock Nest Director.

With the construction permit just granted, stakeholders met Sept. 15 to begin organizing plans for construction, which they hope will be supported by donations and volunteers from the community.

For construction starting Sept. 29, they need operators and equipment including two excavators, two dump trucks, two compactors and a bulldozer.

They also need a volunteer carpenter and donated concrete for constructing the gate of the dam.

The group estimates the cost of the project will top $90,000.

The biggest expense is fuel to operate the equipment, which they estimated will average $12,000 per day, $60,000 total.

Steve Page, stakeholder representative, says it will cost $10,000 to bring engineer Carl Pentilchuk from Kamloops to oversee the construction.

Supplies such as the gate for the dam and lumber are another $10,000, with other miscellaneous costs already at $6,700, Page said, adding that a soil test is also being done for $3,000.

Page says they need a lot of community support via donations and volunteers, and they need things to come together fast so the project can be done this fall.

Anybody willing to donate money, use of equipment or volunteer time to the project is asked to contact Steve Page at 250-643-2748 or Rough Acres Bible Camp or Rock Nest Ranch.


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