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Rabbittown water main work continuing into 2019

City has responsibility ‘to get it right,’ councillor says

Another round of notices went out this week to Rabbittown residents about the water main work happening within the St. John’s neighbourhood.

Residents have been in the middle of the infrastructure work since March of this year, after a winter break, according to the city website. While it was previously suggested there that work (first started in 2017) could be finished by the end of the year, Coun. Hope Jamieson says a technical issue looks to have delayed that finish until 2019.

The schedule is being sorted now with the contractor, Dexter Construction.

“It looks like the work will go into next year, but we will remove the temporary water mains before the freeze in the winter and we’ll reinstate them again next year if we do have to do more work,” Jamieson told The Telegram on Wednesday.

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The temporary water mains in the area are the above-ground, blue pipes.

Notices to residents have referred to “technical challenges with the project,” with a hold on work to address those challenges.

Jamieson said the challenges were leaks discovered in the existing pipe.

The project is to re-line the water main. Leaks along the existing water main are challenges for that work, and Jamieson said the contractor is dealing with the problem.

“We’ve been working with the contractor. They hired a new sub-contractor as of last week to complete the work,” she said.

“We’re going to go back over some of what has already been done, unfortunately — and I realize this is a huge inconvenience for residents, but we really do have a responsibility to get it right. And we’ll make a plan to finish off the rest of the work.”

The contractor’s active work on the water main restarted on Calver Avenue this week.

“We’ll have more information on plans for the rest of the project next week,” Jamieson said.

She said breaks in the old mains have been a persistent problem in the area over the years and the hope is this water main project will result in a solution.

As for any additional costs associated with the leaks being discovered, Jamieson said there’s no word as far as she is aware of any new costs. The original work was issued through the public tender process.

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