The first phases of a multi-million-dollar project to bring Alexandria water to Maxville are about to begin.

Earlier this month, the Township of North Glengarry awarded a $10.2-million water distribution system construction contract to Clarence McDonald Excavation Ltd. The company, based in St. Andrews West, will be responsible for installing water and sanitary services throughout Maxville.   This includes all water mains and services to the property line, road reinstatement and sanitary mains on those streets that do not currently have service.

Residents can expect to see significant construction beginning this spring, but work will continue through the summer and autumn and will end only next year. An information session is planned for May 10 at 7 p.m. at the Maxville arena to explain the various phases of the project.

Morton said that a team approach will be used to supervise the construction, which involves water mains, storm sewers, sanitary sewers and municipal streets. Morton said that he and his municipal staff will supervise the municipal elements of the project, while EVB Engineering of Cornwall will be on-site to supervise contractors.

Bringing municipal water and sewage services to Maxville will mean a big change for residents, none of whom are currently using municipal water. Some residents are still using their own septic systems. No properties have water meters.

North Glengarry Public Works Director Ryan Morton cautioned that sewage connections are being taken only to residents’ and businesses’ property lines. Obtaining permissions to connect to the municipal system is another step and requires approvals from the Ministry of Environment. These connection costs will be paid for by property owners.

About 90 per cent of the town is currently connected to the municipal sewage lagoon system, which was built in about 1988-89, said Morton.

Between 380 and 400 water meters will be installed, Morton says, at residential, multi-residential and commercial locations. Multi-residential water meters will only be installed where it makes sense, Morton says, as water systems inside such buildings would have to be separate lines in order for separate water meters to be installed. The final costs will not be known for some time, but Morton said there will be a base rate and a rate for extra consumption.

The distribution system contract was tendered earlier this year; four bids were received on April 10. Clarence McDonald Excavation Limited submitted the lowest bid. On behalf of the municipality, engineering firm J.L. Richards and Associates Limited determined that the winning bid was in accordance with the tender requirements issued by the municipality.  Council voted in favour of the lowest bid, which was recommended by township staff.

“Awarding this contract is a major milestone for this project,” said Morton, who estimates the final cost of the Maxville infrastructure, water tank and tower and transmission line at about $30 million.

The next major milestone will be the construction of the water transmission main from Alexandria to Maxville; that project is currently in the design phase and planned to go out for tender by the end of May.

In January, council awarded a $1.9-million contract to Landmark Structures to construct a new water tower in Maxville.  That work is expected to begin around May 14, 2018. The water tower was tendered and only one bid was received on December 21, 2017. This is not unusual given that there are a limited number of companies specializing in this service in Canada. Painting was not included in the cost of this tender and the municipality is continuing to finalize the artwork that will be included on the water tower, which will be located near the Maxville Veterinary Clinic on County Road 20. Construction of the water tower, which will serve as a storage tank, is expected to commence this year.