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Cost soars 175% for Donaldson Drive underground work

The cost to replace water and sewer pipes under a section of Donaldson Drive in Grand Forks has ballooned by 175 per cent.

The 560-meter section of road between Highway 3 and Boundary Drive will cost at least $550,000 instead of the original budget of $200,000.

Capital Projects Manager Justin Dinsdale says costs have “gone through the roof.”

“Even the material costs themselves, a stick of your standard SCR pipe used to be about $300 to $400 and this time around it was at $1,200 a stick so that’s a 400 per cent increase on this type of stuff. Just supply chain issues and if we can get it,” Dinsdale said.

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Council agreed last week to shelve $200,000 in sewer work on Riverside Drive plus using a $150,000 surplus from the Kettle River sewer crossing project to get the Donaldson work done this year.

Dinsdale says it makes sense to delay the the Riverside Drive work because it was a “nice to have” project on the list this year

“Riverside Drive is a little more complex as well given some of these inflationary cost because Riverside Drive acts as for all intents (and) purposes a dyke, so there some (sic) complicated and challenges so given a tight budget I wouldn’t necessary like to enter into this year,” Dinsdale explained.

Asked by Coun. Christine Thompson whether $550,000 would be enough money, Dinsdale said it would be “touch and go” and there may be some parts of the project – like some manholes and tie-ins – that could be cut out of the costs get to be too much.

“Donaldson was always in the cards, it needs to get done,” Dinsdale said.

“If we’re going to do this, let’s do it right,” Thompson concluded.

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