Providing a reliable and safe water system through innovative and creative engineering
Clean, safe, reliable water. It’s essential for life and is often taken for granted. The original water supply for Old Crow, Yukon, was drilled through 90 metres of permafrost and included a small truckfill station constructed above the well. The 30-year-old pumphouse was in poor condition, situated on the flood plain, and lacked a redundant water supply.
We were retained by Yukon Government to assess alternate pumphouse locations, water treatment options, and provision of redundant water supply. Our challenges? The accessible-by-air-only location, flood plains, permafrost, thawing a frozen water well, extreme climate conditions, and maintaining operation of the existing facility while constructing the new plant.
The new plant was designed to fit in a Hercules aircraft, and structural insulated panels were used to speed construction and improve quality. The building was built on an elevated steel foundation with the floor above the 100-year flood level (also protecting the permafrost). To address water supply redundancy, a previously drilled frozen artesian water well was thawed and put to use.
The new water system is now serving the community of Old Crow with fresh water, every day.
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