Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

With last hurdles cleared, CentrePort has water deal

  • Print

After four years, a failed annexation attempt, a First Nations lawsuit and an international ruling, CentrePort Canada is finally getting water.

The planned industrial hub will be serviced by a new $45-million water-treatment plant to be built in Headingley over the next two years. Heritage Minister Shelly Glover announced $12.1 million in federal infrastructure funding Wednesday, the first batch of cash to be doled out from the new Building Canada Fund. The plant and the pipes will also serve Stony Mountain penitentiary, which is expanding and needs water, so the Correctional Service of Canada is chipping in $2.4 million.

CentrePort's lack of proper water and sewer services has stymied progress on a federal-provincial promise to turn 8,000 hectares of largely vacant land straddling Winnipeg and the RM of Rosser into a hub of new industrial activity that leverages nearby rail, highway and airport infrastructure.

Already, $212 million has been spent building a new freeway, CentrePort Canada Way, through the land. But wooing big companies was stalled by years of uncertainty and wrangling over the water supply.

Originally, after Rosser shunned the city's proposal to annex part of the rural municipality, the city agreed to extend water and sewer services to CentrePort. But two First Nations near Winnipeg's water source at Shoal Lake, Ont., balked, saying the city had no right to sell water to neighbouring municipalities and the plan violated the terms of a century-old agreement. A preliminary ruling by the International Joint Commission, which handles water disputes, sided with the First Nations.

Instead, CentrePort decided to pump water from the Assiniboine River, which came with the need to build a new water plant.

The cost of the plant, 20 kilometres of pipe and a pumphouse and reservoir will be split three ways between Ottawa, the province and the Cartier Regional Water Co-op, which serves Rosser, Headingley and five other municipalities.

Roughly 2,000 homes now on wells will also be connected to the water supply.

Asked whether the expanded water service will spur additional residential growth outside the city limits, Rosser Reeve Frances Smee said that's unlikely in her RM. The lines won't go where development is planned in Rosser.

Municipal Government Minister Stan Struthers, on hand for Wednesday's funding announcement, said it remains to be seen whether new pipes and expanded treatment capacity will spur exurban growth. Rural municipalities will deal with proposed development as they always have.

Cartier Reeve Roland Rasmussen said the water co-op's only treatment plant in St. Eustache was running near capacity and the co-op would have had to consider expansion options in the next couple of years anyway. That CentrePort's immediate needs helped the region secure millions in capital funding was a welcome bit of good timing.

maryagnes.welch@freepress.mb.ca

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition June 26, 2014 A4

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

NDP Leadership Math with Dan Lett

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • An American White Pelican takes flight from the banks of the Red River in Lockport, MB. A group of pelicans is referred to as a ‘pod’ and the American White Pelican is the only pelican species to have a horn on its bill. May 16, 2012. SARAH O. SWENSON / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS
  • A female Mallard duck leads a group of duckings on a morning swim through the reflections in the Assiniboine River at The Forks Monday.     (WAYNE GLOWACKI/WINNIPEG FREE PRESS) Winnipeg Free Press  June 18 2012

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

Will you be boiling your water until the city gives the all-clear?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google