Airport to get new well

Duane Hicks

The Fort Frances Municipal Airport will be getting safe drinking water thanks to a new groundwater well.
Town council awarded a tender to Fountain Drilling (operating as Mel’s Well Drilling) for $37,566.85 at its regular meeting last night.
The work involves installing a six-inch diameter groundwater well on the airport property to supply water for both the maintenance garage and terminal building.
The new well will go down about 305 feet.
At the same time, the existing well will be decommissioned.
Operations and Facilities manager Doug Brown explained the current well, a hand-dug well dating back to 1972, is a GUDI (groundwater under the direct influence of surface water) well.
It only goes down 28 feet and does not draw enough water.
Because of this, the town has been hauling water to the airport—not only for the public to drink but to supply a makeshift distribution system.
“The main thing is we’re trying to get water you can wash your hands with and drink at [the] airport out of a well, so we’re putting in a proper groundwater well,” said Brown.
He added the airport has been under a boil-water advisory since 2004.
“We’re looking for a water supply between four-six gallons a minute so we can feed all of the services at the airport,” Brown noted.
“And then we have some disinfection equipment to put in once we know the quality of the water coming from the ground there.”
The new groundwater well is scheduled to be completed by June 6; the existing well abandoned by Aug. 8.
Also at last night’s meeting, council:
•received a presentation by Lindsay Strickland and Cathy Sinninghe re: the need for a change room at the Memorial Sports Centre for families with special needs or young children;
•approved the 2015 contributions to reserve funds as outlined in the treasurer’s report;
•endorsed having a page on the Town of Fort Frances website created for the BIA’s use within the provided stipulations;
•accepted the attached Sister Kennedy Centre operational review as a completed strategic plan initiative;
•endorsed the proposed revision to the joint-use agreement for the St. Francis Sports Field, and authorized the Community Services division to present the revised document to the Rainy River District School Board rep;
•authorized the preparation of a bylaw so that Lots 69, 70 and 71 Plan SM-48 no longer are lots on a subdivision plan;
•agreed that the installation of an on-site sewage system be approved for use at a proposed single detached dwelling to be constructed on Eighth Street;
•approved the per diem claim, in the amount of $150, as submitted by Coun. Wendy Brunetta for her attendance at the Essentials of Fire Management & Emergency Planning held in Fort Frances on March 9;
•approved plans for the “Fight the Blight” campaign in May;
•referred a letter from the FFHS “Chem-Free Grad” Committee, asking for a donation from council equivalent to cost of the rental fees for the arena and auditorium minus HST, totalling $960.90, to the Administration & Finance executive committee for its review and recommendation, with input from the Community Services executive committee;
•proclaimed May 2-8 as “Mental Health Week” in Fort Frances; and
•proclaimed April 25-May 1 as “Public Rail Safety Week” in Fort Frances.