Wednesday, October 7, 2020

October 5 Council Meeting: Smoke bombing the sewer and other projects on the go

If you see smoking rising out of manholes or catch basins in the Dumais Park area, do not be alarmed. It is the City testing the storm sewer and sanitary sewer lines.

Langley City council learned that City staff have noted an increase in sanitary sewer flow when it is raining. This means that there is likely a cross-connection between the storm sewer and sanitary sewer. This can happen over time due to human error during construction projects, or damage.

To help find issues, a smoke bomb is placed in the sanitary sewer lines. Crews monitor where the smoke escapes. This shows where there could be problems. This smoke is completely safe for people, animals, and the natural environment.

If sanitary sewer gets into the storm sewer system, raw sewage can flow into our local rivers and creeks. If stormwater gets into the sanitary sewer, it can overload sewer treatment plants resulting in raw sewage being released into the ocean and Fraser River.

Replacing traffic lights is important. Previously when traffic lights needed replacement, the traffic controller, poles, conduits, and signals would be replaced all at once. Each full replacement cost around $250,000.

In order to save money, City staff now complete an audit to see if traffic light poles and conduits are in good shape. If they are, only the actual traffic controller and signals are replaced. These replacements cost around $60,000 each.

City staff are always look for ways to save money while maintaining a good level of service, and state of good repair for our public infrastructure. By extending the life of traffic light poles and conduits, the savings can be reinvested into other infrastructure renewal projects such as renewing more traffic lights.

The City is working on getting Innis Corners Plaza lit for the holiday season. Based on the success of last year, there will be further enhancements to make this plaza a holiday destination. On the topic of the holidays, the light displays along the Fraser Highway One-Way will also be enhanced this year.

Council also received updates as follows:

  • Brydon Park upgrades are nearing completion
  • The 51B Causeway bridge will have it seals replaced shortly
  • The pedestrian bridges near Portage Park and in Nicomekl Park are being renewed
  • The storm sewer line around 47 Avenue will be relining to prevent root infiltration

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