‘A giant step’: Prescott, Augusta, Edwardsburgh-Cardinal team up for major infrastructure grant application

Photo via Ontario Society for Professional Engineers

The Town of Prescott and the Townships of Augusta and Edwardsburgh-Cardinal have jointly applied for a $38-million grant from the provincial government’s Housing-Enabling Water Systems Fund (HEWSF), the municipalities announced on Monday, April 22.

The aim is to expand water and wastewater services across the three communities, potentially accommodating up to 1,550 new homes in Prescott and Augusta while enhancing services for residents in Edwardsburgh Cardinal.

The proposed project consists of two main components: $17.4 million allocated to expand capacity at Prescott’s wastewater treatment plant and related infrastructure, and $20.5 million designated for extending water and sewer services along County Road 2 into Augusta. If successful, the municipalities stand to secure over $27.7 million in funding, with the remaining $10.2 million to be sourced locally or through other revenue streams generated by growth.

The HEWSF, a $825-million provincial initiative spanning three years, aims to support municipalities in repairing, rehabilitating, and expanding critical water infrastructure to facilitate housing development and economic growth. Under this program, the province covers up to 73 per cent of eligible project costs, leaving municipalities responsible for the remaining 27 per cent.

“With the shortage of affordable housing and rentals in our three municipalities, this funding is critical to meet our needs now and into the future,” stated Augusta Township Mayor Jeff Shaver in a media release. “Our communities are appealing to live in and close to trade corridors. We cannot build more housing and support growth without water and wastewater infrastructure in place. This is a giant step for the Township of Augusta as well as our partnering municipalities.”

Edwardsburgh Cardinal Mayor Tory Deschamps called the application “a fantastic example of how collaboration can benefit all residents of our great area.

“For Edwardsburgh-Cardinal residents, it means the ability to secure additional system capacity helping to further economic development in our township,” he continued. “We are excited for the opportunities that may come.”

The outcome of the funding announcement, expected by summer 2024, will dictate the next steps for project implementation.

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