District tackles flooding

Council wants staff to look at drainage along part of Kalamalka Road

Coldstream is taking steps to steer flood waters away from homes.

Three times since 2010, a “raging river,” as one resident describes, has been seen flowing down Kalamalka Road from rapid snow melt off fields while the ground is still frozen.

“The sheer volume of water that we’re dealing with is absolutely massive,” said Michael Baker, director of engineering services.

Several homes between Aberdeen Road and Wisbey Drive have been at risk of flooding, therefore attention to the problem has been raised.

Staff have looked at various control methods, but for the short-term a section of sidewalk along Kalamalka Road will be removed to allow storm and flood water to enter Skobalski Creek via the Sato property.

“Trying to develop a system to capture melting snow like that is very difficult to do,” said Trevor Seibel, chief administrative officer.

There is some possibility for retention facilities in the area where the flooding is originating, in the Grey Road area off Highway 6.

And such long-term solutions will be looked at.

“There’s more we can do but I think for now this is something,” said Coun. Maria Besso.

Mayor Jim Garlick also suggests speaking with Coldstream Ranch to see if there is anything that can be done to mitigate the problem.

It’s anticipated that a February melt could again take place.

Tennis troubles

Parks restructuring has served Coldstream with an under-funded project from the Regional District of North Okanagan.

Plans to reconstruct the Kalview tennis courts were in the plans prior to the regional transfer of parks. As a result Coldstream was handed the originally budgeted $90,000 to complete the project. But the latest tender has come in way over budget at $154,863.

The courts are in rough shape and need to be reconstructed, therefore staff recommended taking $50,000 from the road maintenance program and reducing the scope of the contract to cover the cost.

But Coun. Doug Dirk says that is unacceptable: “If we’re taking money out of the roads for tennis courts I can’t support that.”

Coldstream is going to approach the RDNO about the situation to see if additional funds can be found. It will be re-discussed at Monday’s Committee of the Whole meeting.

“You don’t have a hope in hell of getting more money out of it (RDNO),” warned Dirk.

One option being re-considered for the courts is an acrylic surface worth approximately $15,000.

“It’s a truer bounce, is basically what they (tennis players) are saying,” said Michael Baker, director of engineering services.

But it does not extend the lifespan of the surface.

“If anything you are probably replacing that surface sooner than you would an asphalt surface,” said Baker.

Rivers Day support trickles in

A community event aimed at generating public interest in B.C.’s waterways has collected some support.

The Allan Brooks Nature Society, along with the City of Vernon and Regional District of North Okanagan, will celebrate B.C. Rivers Day Sunday, Sept. 28 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Polson Park.

“The intention is to have fun family activities as well as education and live music,” said organizer Janice Buick.

Coldstream agreed to support the event with $250 and attendance by Mayor Jim Garlick, after such a request was recently made to council.

But the society was reminded that there is a formal process for gaining municipal support, which is in the fall so donations can be budgeted for.

“The problem is there a lot of worthwhile causes,” said Coun. Maria Besso.

Coun. Doug Dirk, who opposed the monetary support, maintains that there is a process for such requests and fears setting a precedent.

“We could have people come each week for a lot of good initiatives and we don’t want to open the door to that.”