The District of Sicamous is applying for a $4.5 million grant to cover the total cost of replacing the Sicamous-Solsqua Bridge. Lachlan Labere/Eagle Valley News

Grant sought for Sicamous-Solsqua Bridge replacement

Funding could cover 100 per cent of up to $4.4 million cost.

The District of Sicamous is pursuing a $4.5 million grant to cover the entire cost of replacing the Sicamous-Solsqua Bridge.

Last week, council agreed to pursue the grant money through the Gas Tax Strategic Priorities Fund. Administered by the Union of BC Municipalities, the fund is available for capital infrastructure projects. Chief administrative officer Kelly Bennett explained that a successful grant application funds the full cost of an eligible project up to $6 million.

A report by All-Span Engineering and Construction pegs the cost of the bridge replacement at approximately $3.6 million, but recommends a budget of up to $4.4 million, which includes a 25 per cent contingency.

“This bridge has got a shorter lifespan every minute and we need to get it looked after. So this is an opportunity that we can look for grant funding (instead of) going to the community through taxation,” commented Mayor Terry Rysz.

Through the same fund the district is also submitting an application for $300,000 for the development of a Sicamous Narrows integrated flood protection walkway. This project would follow the recently completed hydraulic conductivity study of the narrows which recognized the value of a channel wall/walkway. It would identify the scope of work required, a conceptual design, materials, construction cost estimates and more.