Rocky Mountain House and Clearwater County have teamed up to build a $30-million wastewater treatment plant outfitted with the latest technology and able to support decades of population growth.
Rocky Mountain House Mayor Debbie Baich, Clearwater County Reeve Daryl Lougheed and councillors from both municipalities were at the construction site just south of the three wastewater lagoons at the northeast end of town last thursday for a ceremonial groundbreaking.
The state-of-the-art project is being built in response to evolving environmental regulations and the need for sustainable infrastructure, says the town and county in a joint statement.
“This $30-million project will ensure compliance with stringent provincial and federal environmental standards and positions the town to support anticipated growth over the coming decades,” say the municipalities.
The facility will feature a “cutting-edge” sequencing batch reactor system, designed to handle a population of 9,000 residents, while also processing wastewater from Clearwater County properties. Rocky Mountain House has about 6,700 people and the county about 8,600.
About $10.9 million in federal infrastructure funding and $9 million from the province’s Municipal Water/Wastewater Partnership Program went towards the project. The rest was cost-shared between the municipalities with the town paying about $7.5 million and the county $2.7 million.
The plant is expected to be operating in early 2025. The existing sewage lagoons will be decommissioned and its three ponds used to store treated water before it is returned to the North Saskatchewan River.
“In an era where environmental conservation is paramount, this collaborative effort represents a significant stride toward safeguarding our natural surroundings and serving the needs of our ever-expanding community,” say the municipalities.