The City of Vernon won’t have to drain its coffers looking for funds for flood mitigation work.
A major flood mitigation step forward happened Wednesday, Sept. 29, when the city received a $747,000 grant through the Union of British Columbia Municipalities (UBCM) Community Emergency Preparedness Fund, courtesy of the Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General.
This grant funding was conditionally approved earlier this year, and has now been fully approved for a BX Creek sedimentation pond project.
“This project has been several years in the making, so we are thrilled to learn the grant has been approved,” said Mayor Victor Cumming. “BX Creek has a long history of flooding and sediment transport, so constructing the sedimentation pond is a vital component of the city’s flood mitigation plans. On behalf of the city, I’d like to thank the Province of B.C. and UBCM for this financial assistance to make the sedimentation pond project a reality.”
Recent freshet flood events in 2017, 2018 and 2020 mobilized substantial amounts of sediment, causing overbank flooding and infilling culverts along BX Creek. Sediment shifting downstream and depositing within the BX Creek channel is a natural process and is expected to continuously impact the flood risk for the city.
The sedimentation pond project in Upper BX Creek is intended to manage the sediment deposition along BX Creek, significantly reducing pressure on key crossings, reducing the risk of flooding downstream.
The sediment pond is to be located at the BX Ranch Park where there is currently a legacy water irrigation intake structure with a damaged weir (dam) and reservoir which will be decommissioned as part of this project.
Construction is anticipated to start in 2022, contingent upon successful permitting.