Until city hooks into the five new wells in Miltonvale Park developers being asked to construct temporary wells
© Metro Creative Connections
The water taps are still on for developers in Charlottetown, says the chairman of the water and sewer utility committee.
Coun. Eddie Rice told The Guardian that developers aren’t being shut off from the city’s water supply but the municipality has implemented a new approach to ensure enough water is available to any new subdivisions.
“The City of Charlottetown is open for development — but with options,’’ Rice said. “Our first responsibility is to manage the resources we have; to be responsible; to do it in a responsible way, and that’s not to shut off water from anybody.’’
Coun. Rob Lantz, chairman of planning, said recently he was concerned that development has all but ground to a halt because of a policy in the water and sewer utility department not to allow new developments access to the city’s water supply.
Rice said there is no policy, explaining that staff with the utility met with council back in June and presented them with four options. Council decided that, until the city’s five new wells in Miltonvale Park are pumping water by 2016, developers will be required to construct a small supplemental water supply within new subdivisions.
Construction of the water distribution system within the new roads will include fire hydrants and water service laterals to all properties. In addition, the developer is responsible to construct a small supplemental water supply well within the new subdivision to supply the expected domestic water demands of the approved subdivision. Once the new well field is activated the utility will decommission the supplemental well supply.
“The City of Charlottetown is open for development — but with options." Coun. Eddie Rice
“Nothing passed as a bylaw. There’s nothing carved in stone. There’s no policy. We gave (councillors options) and council was fully aware of (what those options were).’’
Rice said two developments, Windsor Park and a larger one in the neighbourhood of East Royalty, were of most concern to council.
“It’s a huge development,’’ Rice said of the latter, further noting that by the time those projects are complete and people are living there the city’s new well field will be ready.
Still, the city wants to exercise caution in the meantime.
“We are taking every precaution to protect our present residents but by no way is this shutting the door to future development.’’
Rice said staff from the utility and the planning department will be meeting soon to go over the temporary approach.
The utility chairman stresses that each and every development application will be assessed on its own merits and that the ultimate decision in every case rests with council.
“We’re going to be careful to manage those until we see ourselves through to 2016. We don’t want (water) shortages (and) we’re not going to have shortages.’’