More than $131 million from the Water for Life and the Alberta Municipal Water/Wastewater Partnership grant programs will support 29 water infrastructure projects across the province. Once projects get underway, the investment will help sustain approximately 900 jobs.

The approved projects include a wastewater line from Sylvan Lake to Red Deer, with $37 million in provincial Water for Life grants. The line will handle wastewater from the Sylvan Lake region to meet the current and future needs of the community as it taps into its potential as a growing tourism destination.

“Anyone visiting this region on a sunny summer day will see throngs of people along the streets, in shops, at restaurants, and at the beach,” said Brian Mason, the province’s Minister of Transportation and Minister of Infrastructure. “This is just one more example of how our government is investing in the infrastructure needed to build the economy here and across Alberta to help create jobs and to make life better for Albertans.”

Sylvan Lake Mayor Sean McIntyre noted the community’s need for a long-term wastewater solution is well documented. “We’ve seen great support, understanding and patience from our residents, while we’ve worked toward connecting to the Red Deer Regional Wastewater System.”

Members of the Alberta Association of Municipal Districts and Counties that are receiving these critical water grants are also pleased the provincial government is addressing the needs of rural Albertans.

“Both the Water for Life and the Alberta Municipal Water/Wastewater Partnership programs are vital for the continued health and welfare of all Albertans. Programs such as these allow rural Albertans to know their municipal councils and the province have their well-being top of mind,” said John Whaley, director, Alberta Association of Municipal Districts and Counties and Mayor of Leduc County.

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Sylvan Lake Regional Wastewater Commission chair Thom Jewell said the project, with provincial support covering 90 per cent of the cost, means the local environment will be protected and residents won’t have to face the threat of water bans once the project is complete. The line is anticipated to be running in 2020.

“This provincial-regional collaboration represents a major step forward in the long-term protection of the Sylvan Lake watershed. This is not only good for the people across our region but also for today’s and tomorrow’s environment,” said Sylvan Lake Regional Wastewater Commission chair Thom Jewell.

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