The Government of Canada and the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) announced a federal investment of more than $1.43 million to help 35 communities in New Brunswick, Saskatchewan, Nova Scotia, Quebec and Alberta implement innovative strategies to manage their municipal infrastructure.

Known as asset management, this investment will help the communities ensure that their infrastructure, such as arenas, bridges, drinking water and wastewater systems, and roads are working as efficiently as possible. It will also allow them to make better investment decisions. Asset management also helps reduce risks so municipalities can provide reliable and affordable services and a high quality of life to their residents.

“Investments in infrastructure asset management projects will help improve the quality of life in municipalities across Canada. Today’s funding announcement will help them plan and manage their infrastructure based on reliable data to create strong, sustainable and affordable communities,” said Sean Fraser, Minister of Housing, Infrastructure and Communities.

“Local governments are responsible for approximately 60 per cent of the public infrastructure that support our economy and our quality of life, such as roads, bridges and wastewater systems. That’s why supporting them in building and maintaining strong asset management through initiatives like the FCM’s Municipal Asset Management Program is crucial. This program, funded by the Government of Canada, helps communities across the country develop sound asset management practices and conduct data collection and analysis to improve their investment decisions,” said Scott Pearce, President, Federation of Canadian Municipalities.

In New Brunswick the communities receiving $230,000 in support are:

The City of Moncton. The City receives $49,360 to operationalize asset management through a strategy that includes:

  • The preparation of key performance indicators to measure performance;
  • Recommendations to update 5-year capital projects;
  • The undertaking of customer and technical levels of service assessments;
  • The development of risk and condition assessment policies; and
  • The preparation of standard operating procedures to support coordination and/or integration of cross-functional asset management activities.
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The City of Saint John. The City receives $48,000 to establish a standard approach to collect, store, and maintain all municipal asset data. Additionally, the project will identify data quality gaps, address “desktop” issues, and prioritize future data improvement activities.

In Saskatchewan the communities receiving $220,000 in support are:

The Rural Municipality of Pleasantdale No. 398. It receives $50,000 to collect data that will better inform its decisions on infrastructure and capital assets. The data collected will be focused on road conditions, gravel pits and future resource expectations.

The Town of Lumsden. It receives $50,000 to update, develop, and implement asset management practices with identified objectives, roles, and levels of service. The Town will consolidate data into a more accessible and useable format, and the asset investment plans developed will prioritize work to be implemented over 5 to 10 years. Operational templates will be developed to help with the collection and use of missing or inadequate data.

The Rural Municipality of Hazel Dell No. 335. It receives $49,950 to create and maintain an asset management program. Once the initial asset data has been created, staff will be assigned to update it to better assist the Municipality with budgeting, forecasting, and future capital planning.

In Nova Scotia the communities receiving $180,000 in support are:

The Town of Trenton. The Town receives $50,000 to create asset management strategies, roadmaps, and asset-specific plans for the existing sanitary sewer system, street network, sidewalks, and curbs.

The Municipality of Digby. The Municipality receives $38,880 to complete its asset register which will include attribute data such as age, condition, and material, and support a preliminary 5-year capital program.

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The Town of Berwick. The Town receives $49,950 to compile a complete inventory of major assets including linear assets, buildings and structures, and fleet, and to support a preliminary capital program. Council and staff will also participate in asset management training sessions as part of this initiative.

The County of King. The County receives $49,950 to complete and consolidate an inventory of the major assets including linear assets, buildings and structures and fleet, and to support a preliminary capital program.

In Quebec the communities receiving $500,000 in support are:

The City of Thetford Mines. It will receive $50,000 to perform a full inventory of municipal infrastructure under its responsibility and assess the condition of each structure in order to develop an asset management plan. The City will also assess the costs of upgrading its infrastructure and will identify the short-, medium- and long-term investments required to maintain its assets at an adequate service level.

The Regional County Municipality (RCM) of Fjord-du-Saguenay. It will receive $50,000 to implement asset management through concrete measures. The assets under the RCM’s responsibility, i.e., waterways and buildings, are all affected by climate change and exposed to various types of risk. The RCM will make an inventory that will document those assets in order to share this knowledge and make it possible to analyze the impacts of climate change.

The City of Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu. It will receive $50,000 to inspect the water mains of its drinking water distribution system in order to plan the future interventions required to maintain its service level. The collected data will also make it possible to update asset management tools.

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In Alberta the communities receiving $300,000 in support are:

The County of Wetaskiwin No. 10. It receives $50,000 to improve its data collection, data input, reporting capabilities, and to expand asset management support.

The Town of Redwater. It receives $50,000 to undertake a project to assess and prioritize the condition of all municipal buildings. An asset management spreadsheet will be created to capture costs associated with identified issues and help with forecasting and budgeting processes for future capital and operations.

The County of Newell. It receives $50,000 to undertake a study of the condition of its roads. The study will include assessments of all gravel roads to determine maintenance requirements. The findings will be reviewed and used to shape Newell’s asset management practices and contribute to its 10-year capital budget. The study will also help the County plan for the renewal of gravel roads and future maintenance activities with the goal to reach best life-cycle costs.

Featured image: Saint John, N.B.

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