With over $1 million at stake, there is naturally some apprehension about the upcoming outdoor swimming park/lazy river project at Twin Rivers Park now that the area has been under water for a couple of weeks.
“The distinguishing part is that it has now been identified,” said Castlegar mayor Lawrence Chernoff. “This is a high, high water level. It makes it easier for us to design because now it puts into play this is where the high water level would be in an extreme year.”
Of course, the million dollar question, or $1.3 million to be exact, is whether this summer’s absurd weather is an anomaly or a indication of things to come.
“The question is: ‘is this a 50 year event or a 20 year event or a ten year event?’,” said Chernoff. “This is something we need to look at. So when we come in to design we’ll really look at this and see how we need to design the whole facility.”
Chernoff says that at this time their is no plan to move the lazy river project.
“There’s a plan. The plan’s still in place and it’s still workable,” he said. “When it comes to the engineers and they’ll have a look at it and the level of the river – they may change it. We’re hoping it’ll stand with the berm being built and really keeping the water out of that area. It’s workable at this stage. But it may change once the engineers have a look at it because now we’ll received extreme levels of water at Millennium as everyone is well aware.”
In some ways, the high river levels and flooding at Twin Rivers Park is a positive, as it allows the City to plan for extreme weather and river conditions.
“When you look at it, ‘does it have the ability to happen again?’ Yes it does,” he said. “If you know what the level is know, you have to be prepared to do this on an ongoing basis. It’s really about protection for our project. It’s one and a half million dollars. To look at it and have it not be workable? No. We now have identified the level of water and that will come into the design of the project.”