Lantzville water system gets $375K improvement

The District of Lantzville will move ahead on well system improvements instead of referring the issue to a task force.

A $375,000 well system overhaul is anticipated to pump up Lantzville’s water supply.

Lantzville council opted to forge ahead with improvements to its well system, reversing a previous decision to put the issue to a new task force.

The move stems from recommendations of a wellfield management study, which showed  improvements could allow for an additional 400 cubic metres of water a day. Well No. 6 is operating inefficiently and would be replaced, while three other wells would be redeveloped to increase capacity.

Council agreed to strike a new task force on groundwater on Jan. 11, which the mayor had said would look at what approach to take with the well work: replacement of Well No. 6 or the redevelopment of three others. Two weeks later, council has decided to do all of the above, approving $375,000 for the work in its five-year financial plan.

Plenty of work has been done, including recommendations to previous councils, according to Coun. Mark Swain, who said they have expert opinions and need to move forward on implementing them.

“We just keep going around and around in circles on water and I think the task force would be, let’s go for another spin,” he said.

Coun. Bob Colclough said it made no sense to him to ask laypersons to advise council on “extremely technical issues” when they have consultants. He also doesn’t believe the well issue should have gone to council, pointing out the redevelopment and re-drilling is an ongoing operation and maintenance exercise.

“The bottom line is we have a responsibility to provide the residents with water and we had severe restrictions last year because of a lack of water,” he said. “If we have more there that we can access just by fixing the problems then I think it’s upon us to fix them. Get on with it.”

Colclough and Swain both see the potential for increased water connections if it’s proven there’s more water available in the municipal well system. Swain said the work will allow council to know what the capacity is and what they have as a resource, so they can make decisions moving forward.

District staff members will now look at how to move ahead with the project.

Nanaimo News Bulletin

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