Gold Bar residents scored a victory at Edmonton City Hall on Monday. They’ve convinced city planners to hold off on deciding where to send sewage in the decades to come.
“There’ll be no rerouting and constructing of that sewage trunk line to the Gold Bar Wastewater Treatment Plant instead of the facility in which it was intended until city council and the citizens of Edmonton have an opportunity to have input on that decision,” said Jim Rickett with the Save Gold Bar Park Alliance. He had a visible smile after the plan was put on hold for a year.
It wrapped up an 18-month battle during which he says community members fought a decision that was made behind closed doors to link a new trunk line from the south to Gold Bar instead of a regional plant well outside city limits.
“Including citizens in these important decisions results in the best outcomes for everybody,” Rickett said.
As those nearby residents complained, city manager Linda Cochrane and her team heard those objections.
“We’ve heard here pretty loud and clear about expectations,” Cochrane told the meeting. “And so, if we could get some time to go back and not knee-jerk react today, but work on this a bit, in consultation with community and in consultation with EPCOR, we might be able to satisfy the majority of the interests in this.”
Developers, EPCOR and the residents will take a year to come back with a new plan.
Time is on their side. Peter Ohm, who heads planning for the city, said the delay will not have any impact on utility rates.
“That goes to the question of confidence in the decision-making process, which doesn’t mean we didn’t get to the right decision,” Mayor Don Iveson said in tabling the delay.
Watch below (Feb. 26, 2018): The Gold Bar Wastewater Treatment Plant is looking to expand and part of the plan involves a new surface parking lot in a popular Edmonton river valley park. Sarah Kraus has details.