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Saint John upgrades combined sewer system that has elements from 1872

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Saint John
The Saint John system includes 325 km of storm sewers, 2,172 combined sewers, 9,417 catch basins, 4,934 storm manholes, and 2,172 combined manholes. Photo credit: Danita Delimont, AdobeStock

Upgrades worth $38.7 million will soon be in the works for part of the combined sewer system in uptown Saint John, where the New Brunswick city has some of the oldest wastewater infrastructure in Canada, including combined terra cotta sewers dating back to 1872 in the central peninsula.

The project, which last week secured federal funding, involves upgrading and separating a portion of the city’s aging combined sewer system, which includes storm and sanitary sewers. In addition to excavating and rehabilitating water and sewer pipe systems, the project will also see the design and construction of additional wastewater infrastructure.

“This substantial investment in our water and wastewater infrastructure positions Saint John for sustainability, and future growth and investment,” said Saint John Mayor Don Darling in a statement to media. “Resilient cities, ready for what’s next, make investments just like this one, so they can meet the needs of future generations,” he added.

The Saint John system includes 325 km of storm sewers, 2,172 combined sewers, 9,417 catch basins, 4,934 storm manholes, and 2,172 combined manholes.

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The combined sewer upgrades project will also restore 7.5 kilometres of roadway impacted by the upgrades.

The federal government is investing more than $15.5 million through the Green Infrastructure Stream of the Investing in Canada program to support the project. The provincial government is investing over $12.9 million, and the City of Saint John is contributing over $10.3 million.

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