Water Concerns In The Wildflower/Silvercreek Area

I have some information with respect to the water concerns some of you have in the Wildflower/Silvercreek area from Andrea Miller, General Manager of Infrastructure and Growth Management.

I will be working with Ms. Miller to pursue this issue further with staff and to add the necessary costs for data collection and correction of this problem to the 2021 budget.

Please keep in mind that I do not know what the cost of this large project will be yet, and it will need to be passed at city council when we discuss the budget next fall.

In the meantime, I hope you stay well. Please let me know if you have any further questions!

Here are Mrs. Miller’s comments:

“This area has a history of surface water concerns from the adjacent EP lands.

The area in question underwent drainage improvements, specifically the wildflower area a couple of years ago.

Operations staff attended the site today to gather additional information and to determine what if anything the City can do.

Attached is an air photo. The red circled area below is very wet due to natural emerging ground water. The water is running across the back of the lots of Silvercreek, albeit slowly. The area is also very flat and there is very little fall in elevation to the catch basin (in blue) at the south west corner of 32 Wildflower (32 WF). The catch basin is currently clear and water is draining into it. The drainage path splits here into two – one to the basin and the other to the channel along side 32 Wildflower and into the storm sewer at the end of the court (in blue). It is difficult to determine definitively what goes where here and where the actual split occurs. The entire area is very wet and covered in thick vegetation and watercress.

The new channel along the side of 32 Wildflower has a bit of a flat/high spot. The water does slowly flow to this point, and then infiltrates into the ground. This is a good thing for natural ground water recharge but does not promote consistent drainage as per the original subdivision design. It is causing some pooling along the back 50% or so of the side of 32 Wildflower and potentially back into the red circled swampy area.

The subdivision design drawings don’t reflect exactly what staff see on site. That does happen over time. There may reason to put the channel back to original design but we are not sure it will help with the standing water situation in this area.

The area is, for the lack of a better term, a swamp. This area is also designated MNR ANSI land (Area of Natural and Scientific Interest) and regulated by the NVCA. That is one of the reasons it is the way it is and the reason why it is not always the same year over year. There would be some discussions needed to make any changes here.

Our feeling is that a significant amount of work would be needed This work would be costly, involving the removal of existing channel materials and essentially reconstructing it. The fencing would also need to be removed and replaced. This is not work that the City has ever contemplated doing. We are going to need to review it in more detail and make some decisions on next steps.

Andrea (Bourrie) Miller RPPGeneral Manager Infrastructure and Growth Management
City of Barrie”