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Winning design chosen to spruce up Selkirk water tower

Selkirk-born designer Robyn Kacperski shows off her winning design for Selkirk's water tower.
Selkirk-born designer Robyn Kacperski shows off her winning design for Selkirk's water tower. Submitted/City of Selkirk

The City of Selkirk is giving its iconic water tower a makeover.

In March last year, Selkirk made a call for submissions for designs to spruce up the city’s roughly 40-metre tall water tower, which Mayor Larry Johannson says is in need of some TLC.

READ MORE: Selkirk looking to give iconic community water tower a facelift

“Many will remember how good it looked when it was last painted, but that paint is peeling and being replaced with rust. This year, we plan to change that,” Johannson said of the tower in a video posted on the city’s Facebook page.

“We can all agree that the current state of this iconic piece of our landscape does not embody the new energy and enthusiasm in our community.”

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The tower was last painted in 1998.
The tower was last painted in 1998. Submitted/City of Selkirk

This week the city said a winning submission has been chosen from more than 30 entries.

The design — created by Robyn Kacperski, a Selkirk-raised graphic designer now living in Winnipeg — uses the city’s brand elements around the top of the tower and includes the city’s logo painted on opposite sides around the widest area.

The city says a “more in-depth mural” will be added to the tower’s base next year.

“I really wanted to bring the design down. My hope is that people visiting or driving by see this large design and want to explore deeper and get more detail,” said Kacperski in a release.

“This mural will go more into the history, the future and what it is now. People can come here, take a photo and enjoy it from street level.”

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The tower — built in 1961 to replace a previous structure that was erected in the early 1900s — has a maximum capacity of 946,000 litres of water and was last painted in 1998.

Now that they’ve settled on a design, the city has released a request for proposal for the actual work, something city spokesperson Riley Aisman says could be a tall order.

“We have a lot of experts in a lot of different fields in Selkirk, but painting massive water towers isn’t one of them,” he said in an email to Global News.

“We’re not sure what the best practice is for this — if there’s a certain technique to paint the tower, if there’s some sort of wrap that would work better.

“We’re asking these companies to match Robyn’s design, keep it in budget and meet our deadline of the end of fall.”

Robyn Kacperski’s winning design.
Robyn Kacperski’s winning design. Submitted/City of Selkirk

Aisman said the city has budgeted $500,000 for the job.

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Selkirk’s CAO, Duane Nicol, said the city wants to make visiting the water tower “more of an experience” and adds the city is looking at making further improvements in the future.

READ MORE: Selkirk unleashes amphibex ice breakers in fight against spring flooding

“This is a clean and sharp design. It’s a strong reflection of the community renewal and regeneration we’re seeing around us,” said Nicol in a release.

“It’s truly an exciting project. We can’t wait until this is done for the community to enjoy and be proud of.”

Hometown Highlight, Selkirk entrepreneurs
Hometown Highlight, Selkirk entrepreneurs