Despite summer having barely started, the City of Surrey is looking toward its winter maintenance preparedness.
This Monday (July 8), city council will be voting on awarding a contract for the supply and delivery of bulk winter road salt as well as the supply of one CNG-fuelled tandem-axle dump truck with winter maintenance equipment.
Staff is recommending Lafarge Asphalt Technologies for the annual supply and delivery of 12,000 tonnes of bulk winter road salt to the city for a two-year term at an annual price of $1.341 million and to set the annual expenditure authorization limit for the contract at $1.475 million.
According to a corporate report from the acting general manager of engineering Jaime Boan, the city “typically” purchasing salt in bulk and the volume of road salt fluctuates each year depending on the severity of the winter season.
Boan’s report states that on average the city uses about 6,4000 tonnes of road salt over an entire winter season. However, in comparison in “unusually high snowfall events” the city has had to use more than 20,000 tonnes of road salt in a season.
The city, according to Boan, currently has the capacity to hold about 17,000 tonnes of road salt within its salt storage facility at the operations centre.
The report says that Lafarge Asphalt Technologies, in its submission to the city, priced the bulk salt at $111.75 per tonne, which falls “well within” the city’s price range in the past decade.
Over the years, the city has purchased bulk road salt for $86.97 per tonne at the low end and $123.88 per tonne at the high end. There has also been an average annual increase of 5.69 per cent in bulk winter road salt since 2015.
For the CNG-fuelled truck, Boan’s report to council recommends awarding a contract to First Truck Centre Vancouver Inc. for $519,812.16 for the compressed natural gas truck, which would include a front-mount plow and a salt spreader. The report also recommends setting the expenditure authorization limit at $540,000.
As part of the 2018 Capital Replacement and Addition budget, the engineering department identified four tandem-axle trucks that required replacing, and could approved the purchase of three in September of 2018.
The fourth wasn’t purchased, according to the report, so staff could identify the specifications to purchase and pilot a “dedicated CNG-fuelled tandem-axle truck.” The report says the city will pilot this truck “to ensure that it does in fact meet all of its operating requirements” before purchasing additional trucks.
A review of the difference in cost between diesel and CNG vehicles, according to the report, found there is an additional cost of $67,711.84 for CNG tanks and engine. Following the cost analysis between the two, “it has been determined that the CNG vehicle has an increased cost of $26,933.38 over a similar diesel vehicle, inclusive of the Fortis BC rebate.
Funding for the CNG truck will come from the 2019 Fleet Capital Replacement program, reads the report.
Meantime, the City of Surrey won the American Public Works Association Excellence in Snow and Ice Control Award, which will be presented to mayor and council in the fall.
According to the report, it has only been won by two other Canadian cities; Calgary and Winnipeg.
The award is based on the following criteria: materials/handling, equipment, technical, training, community outreach and environmental.
In a report to council on the city’s snow and ice operations, it highlighted a summary of actions staff have implemented to improve services such as:
• Acquiring additional equipment and made operational improvements “to enhance the City’s response to winter storms”;
• Improving response time for snow and ice-clearing services on Priority 3 routes (residential streets) “in the event of a prolonged snow event”;
• Increasing business property owner compliance for snow clearing, particularly in high-pedestrian commercial areas; increased bylaw enforcement “for the purpose of increasing awareness of property owner responsibility and compliance”;
• Maintaining pedestrian sidewalks and pathways next to urban forests and city-owned land and cleared certain sidewalks and walkways “under special circumstances”;
• Improving service to the city’s frontage sidewalks and parking lots at civic facilities and parks; and
• Updating the city’s Snow and Ice Control policy