The District of Houston hopes to hear very soon if a grant application to ease the problem of flooding around several properties, including the Houston Trailer Park, is successful. (Houston Today photo)

Silverthorne flood project grant denied

But second grant application still pending

The District of Houston has been unsuccessful in one grant application but has one more pending in its efforts to finance and extensive project to solve seasonal flooding of the Silverthorne Creek drainage area.

The unsuccessful one was to the Union of B.C. Municipalities for $750,000, less than half of the $1.866 million estimated cost of the project.

But it still has one pending, this time an application to the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program, for $1.368 million.

The District has set aside $498,459 from surplus funds in order to finance its portion of the total budget, 26.67 per cent,” District of Houston chief administrative officer Gerald Pinchbeck noted of this second application.

“If the funding application is approved, the District will be able to proceed into the detailed design and permitting phases for this project.”

The District is expecting to hear back from the program by the summer.

The estimated $1.866 million project to alleviate flooding arose out of a 2019 study prepared by the firm Kingston and Associates which outllined historic spring flooding events increasing since 1997 because two existing systems to drain waters can’t handle the flows from snowmelt to the Bulkley River.

Culverts were blocked and ditches compromised, the study said of problems impeding proper drainage.

The study noted that two flooding events in 2017 and 2018 resulted in flooding of Finning Canada’s property, flooding of Monster Industries property, water flowing over CN tracks, and flooding of the Morice River Forest Service Road.

Specifically, the study outlined what it called “probable seasonal inundation of septic systems at the Silverthorne Trailer Park, home to approximately 25 residential manufactured homes.”

“There have been no reported problems, however the regulatory requirements for these septic systems to lie above the 25-year flood event is almost certainly not being met,” the study noted.

It said there’s a potential for contamination of local wells, including those at the trailer park.

The option chosen by council to pursue would involve running drainage pipes under both the CN Rail line and the second crossing of a CN Rail spur line and the Morice River Road.

Construction of a berm at Monster Industries would also take as would work to connect Oxbow Lake to a reclaimed gravel pit with an outlet control installation at the northwest outlet to the gravel pit and construction of upgraded channel between this location and the Morice River Road.

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Early arrival of warmer weather has meant waters are rising in the area. The District of Houston hopes to hear very soon if a grant application to ease the problem of flooding from Silverthorne Creek around several properties is successful. For now, the District has sand and sandbags available. (Houston Today photo)

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