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Letters, Feb. 21

Canal proposal flawed

The city’s proposal to replace 2 miles of the Talent Irrigation District is flawed.

The proposal plans to replace open canals, but also will replace a long stretch of the TID that is already piped.

The city of Ashland’s Comprehensive Water Management Plan (https://www.ashland.or.us/Page.asp?NavID=15317) states the following:

S-11 TID Canal Piping

It is recommended that the city convert the Talent Irrigation District (TID) canal to a piped system from the Starlite Monitoring Station to the Terrace Street Pump Station. This project is estimated to cost approximately $1.1 million. (Note that the price has greatly increased to $3 million to $4 million.)

There is nothing said about replacing already piped sections, so clearly that alternative has never been analyzed. Yet, the city forges ahead.

It would clearly be cheaper to either leave the piped sections alone, or to reline them without disturbing the land. And the city needs to analyze a maintenance-only or repair-only option instead of letting grant money drive the project.

And what’s this about nearly 300 trees being cut? That’s a stump, on average, every 35 feet.

The city needs to properly analyze this proposal so that it is done with the minimal invasiveness, the minimal cost and the minimal impact to the environment. And, the city needs to follow its own Comprehensive Water Master Plan.

Tom Dimitre


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