IT’S DONE!

Four years over schedule, 100% over budget and we can’t drink from it until the COVID 19 pandemic ends.

Who says irony is dead?

On this blog site, Water for Riley documented every step, every meeting, every success, every partner and donor, every ‘I wish I’d never started this project’ moment.

Here is the last step of the fabrication stage, and, many times, I thought we’d never reach a point where that sentence is true:

Duncan from Landform started with mud in the rain
The construction site needed levelling
Landform scheduled the sod laying to take advantage of the rain
By afternoon, the sod was down and Trail had done the inspection.
The fence will stay for two weeks to give the sod time to connect with the site
The dog bowl is a little tall for a Westie, so he’ll need human help to drink.
Trail also inspected the paw pedal that will allow dogs to help themselves, if they are tall enough
When it is again safe to touch a surface that others touched, thirsty park visitors will approach the drinking fountain to enjoy clean delicious mountain water.

Water for Riley will post news of the drinking fountain water turning on whenever The City of Calgary deems it safe. We dream …

Until then, Team Water for Riley is alive and planning the celebration.

There are so many people to thank, a whole community of effort, a collection of industry experts, generous donors, and a City of helpful public employees who made this possible. I am so grateful to these donors and partners:

Please, in these tough economic times, support the businesses that supported us.
Everyone in these companies was invaluable in making this project happen.

Over the five years of the project, many people volunteered time. As well as HSCA staff, especially Lisa Chong, and the members of the HSCA Planning Committee to whom Water for Riley reported, these community members volunteered their time on the planning committee:

Gena Rotstein, Natalie Bach, Jocelyn Kabatoff, Michelle Vincent, Sally Truss, Fong Ku, Lorna Cordeiro, and Diana Macdonald. I hope anyone I’ve forgotten will forgive me.

Three people kept me inspired when I almost gave up: Ron Buchan and Michelle Reid, The City of Calgary Parks Department, and Decker Butzner. And, of course, the inspiration for the project, Trail the opinionated Westie.

Now, over to Maddie Wong Selby and the events committee, it is your time to party like it’s 2019.

Gratefully, signing off for now,

Deborah Sword


Be part of Calgary’s public art legacy;

for Riley Park, for you, and for the future.

See our story in a video http://www.waterforriley.org/2018/07/acad-w4r-video/

Penultimate step

Water for Riley’s multi-year saga has always had two completion dates.

  1. Installation of the fabricated design.
  2. The celebration of the project, which would officially open the drinking fountain and end Water for Riley.
In March, 2019, we presented this high level schedule to donors

The first milestone is almost behind us.

A yellow outline marks the shape of the rubber surface for the installers to follow.
GPI, masters of play at work
Preparing the material to apply on site
The rubber got a short ride from the truck to the site
The surface is the same as under the playground.
And then it was done.
Someday soon, the playground and drinking fountain will be open.
Well, that opening might be soonish.

The last step of the installation milestone is to remediate the site.

The first step of the celebration milestone will be announced soon.

Be part of Calgary’s public art legacy;
for Riley Park, for you, and for the future.

We invite everyone to participate as a volunteer, fundraiser, donor, sponsor, or any other role. Call 403 862 1923 and leave your contact information.

See our story in a video http://www.waterforriley.org/2018/07/acad-w4r-video/

Preparing the ground

Landform Inc., has been on site in Riley Park as Project Manager and Prime Contractor for the drinking fountain’s installation.

Duncan ran Landform’s equipment on site in Riley Park

This week, the Landform crew laying the foundation encountered an unexpected need for a geotechnical opinion. This was a last minute surprise for the Water for Riley team.

Apparently, the engineering assumption was that the site had approximately 6-12 inches of topsoil. Landform found 45-50 inches of topsoil/unsuitable material and called the engineering consultants, who determined that a geotechnical opinion was needed.

The geotechnical engineer recommended a bridging structure of geotextile/gravel to provide a support structure for the rubber surfacing. The unsuitable soil was described as:

a silty sand fill soil overlying a native sand.  The silty sand fill was approximately 500mm thick and was dilatant, loose, and medium brown with some black organics throughout.  The native sand was moist, compact, and medium brown in colour. 

Water for Riley thanks McIntosh Lalani Engineering Ltd., a division of Englobe, for  swift action in getting the site specifics that Landform needed. It prevented both delay in completing the work and the risk of installing an inadequate foundation. 

The geotechnical engineer recommended a non woven geotextile fabric overlaid with a biaxial geogrid reinforcement for compaction of approximately 300mmm of base gravels to bring the subgrade up to design elevation. 

It’s easiest to let the photographs translate that into plain language.

Kai laid the non woven geotextile fabric
The gravel arrived in the afternoon to cover the fabric, and Kai and Duncan levelled it before compacting it
This is the view when approaching from the north, the playground as backdrop

The next, almost last, step is to lay a rubber surface that is the same as the mat under the playground.

the site is ready for the final surface work, likely on May 14, 2020, and then – IT”S DONE except for the celebration

Water test – passed

On May 5, 2020, the Water for Riley installation team gathered to test the new drinking fountain in Riley Park.

The foundation will be laid next week and will cover the three stems to the level of the white water pipes. Then the drinking water won’t be so far out of reach.

Successful water tests
Dwayne from Rainmaker and Peter from Landform collected the first water
Peter demonstrates the accessible drinking fountain passes the test
Dwayne demonstrates the middle drinking fountain works
Trail eyes the dog drinking fountain, waiting for the time the park will be open post-COVID-19
The drinking fountains all passed the water test
the dog drinking fountain works with a paw pedal
Water for Riley saved the first water, to pour when the drinking fountain opens, post-COVID-19

Be part of Calgary’s public art legacy;
for Riley Park, for you, and for the future.

Donate to make this vision become reality. At the instructions to seller page, specify that your support is for The Water for Riley Project. The Parks Foundation issues tax receipts for donations greater than $10.00.

We invite everyone to participate as a volunteer, fundraiser, donor, sponsor, or any other role. Call 403 862 1923 and leave your contact information.

See our story in a video http://www.waterforriley.org/2018/07/acad-w4r-video/

Countdown in days and hours, instead of years and months

There is a drinking fountain in Riley Park. Once we are done with COVID-19, there will be water in the drinking fountain.

Until then, enjoy the Reflecting Blooms as ornaments.

Be part of Calgary’s public art legacy;
for Riley Park, for you, and for the future.

Donate to make this vision become reality. At the instructions to seller page, specify that your support is for The Water for Riley Project. The Parks Foundation issues tax receipts for donations greater than $10.00.

We invite everyone to participate as a volunteer, fundraiser, donor, sponsor, or any other role. Call 403 862 1923 and leave your contact information.See our story in a video http://www.waterforriley.org/2018/07/acad-w4r-video/

Installation progress report

IT’S HAPPENING!!

Pardon the shouting but after all this time and combined effort of so many volunteers and donors …

You can probably understand that reaction.

A fence, a digger and a pile of dirt
Fittings according to Screw Pile, the subcontractor that did the alignment
Heavy Industries and Landform worked to smooth out the dirt and install pipes

While that was going on, between 20 and 29 April, 2020, The City of Calgary installed the water valves and lines to the pipes. The water flowed just to prove it was there, and then The City staff shut it off to await the plumbers, likely tomorrow or Monday (1 or 4 May, 2020). Water for Riley was there to capture the moment.

Every thing is ready for Heavy Industries to install the drinking fountain TOMORROW. (shouting again, can’t help it).

Be part of Calgary’s public art legacy;
for Riley Park, for you, and for the future.

Donate to make this vision become reality. At the instructions to seller page, specify that your support is for The Water for Riley Project. The Parks Foundation issues tax receipts for donations greater than $10.00.

We invite everyone to participate as a volunteer, fundraiser, donor, sponsor, or any other role. Call 403 862 1923 and leave your contact information.

See our story in a video http://www.waterforriley.org/2018/07/acad-w4r-video/

Installation begins at last

It’s been a long time coming

How long? Here’s a copy of the original email asking if a community, volunteer effort for a drinking fountain in Riley Park was a good idea. See that date?

And that’s what we did

This week, Riley Park visitors will see construction start on a student designed drinking fountain that is local from start to finish. In all the years we spent to get here, we never strayed from the vision.

Peter Staples, Project Manager for Landform, at 11:30 AM, 20 April, 2020,
outlined the drinking fountain’s footprint with a can of spray paint.
By 3:30 PM, the construction site was fenced.
After eight years, the project is moving forward.
Finally.
The footprint is amoeba shaped.
Trail has inspected and approved.

Be part of Calgary’s public art legacy;
for Riley Park, for you, and for the future.

Donate to make this vision become reality. At the instructions to seller page, specify that your support is for The Water for Riley Project. The Parks Foundation issues tax receipts for donations greater than $10.00.

We invite everyone to participate as a volunteer, fundraiser, donor, sponsor, or any other role. Call 403 862 1923 and leave your contact information.

See our story in a video http://www.waterforriley.org/2018/07/acad-w4r-video/

Drinking fountain proceeding

The installation team is ready to start

The celebration of the project is postponed. The project isn’t.

Whew.

Continual snowfall, even into mid-April, and warm sun created pools of snowmelt near the children’s playground. Despite Riley Park looking like a swamp, Landform will begin preparing the site next week.

Taking care of you

Landform must comply with COVID 19 protocols. The construction will be easy to walk around and watch from a safe physical distance.

In our team meeting today, The City of Calgary Water Services staff confirmed that parks drinking fountains won’t be turned on until Public Health officials declare the COVID 19 crisis ended.

Functional to follow in the future

Ever since this project began as a grassroots, volunteer driven effort, we’ve described it as an artistic functional drinking fountain. Until it’s safe to touch shared facilities again, the drinking fountain will be only artistic.

We look forward to a morale boosting celebration when we can again gather in beautiful Riley Park.

Until then, Water for Riley wishes everyone good health.

Be part of Calgary’s public art legacy;
for Riley Park, for you, and for the future.

Donate to make this vision become reality. At the instructions to seller page, specify that your support is for The Water for Riley Project. The Parks Foundation issues tax receipts for donations greater than $10.00.

We invite everyone to participate as a volunteer, fundraiser, donor, sponsor, or any other role. Call 403 862 1923 and leave your contact information.See our story in a video http://www.waterforriley.org/2018/07/acad-w4r-video/

Postponed

The volunteers were disappointed but not surprised to learn that Water for Riley’s grand opening celebration will not proceed on 13 June, 2020.

We wish everyone good health, clean hands, sanitized surroundings, and contacts with friends and family from a physical distance.

Until we can meet again in gatherings, please be safe and well.

And now, the sequel to the 4 April, 2020, post, from 25 April, 2020, Calgary Herald. No longer is the possible party date the end of June. When, at last, we can gather in Riley Park, we will be so very ready to celebrate, not just the drinking fountain.

Be part of Calgary’s public art legacy;
for Riley Park, for you, and for the future.

Donate to make this vision become reality. At the instructions to seller page, specify that your support is for The Water for Riley Project. The Parks Foundation issues tax receipts for donations greater than $10.00.

We invite everyone to participate as a volunteer, fundraiser, donor, sponsor, or any other role. Call 403 862 1923 and leave your contact information.See our story in a video http://www.waterforriley.org/2018/07/acad-w4r-video/

Crucial progress made

Another milestone met

Yesterday, March 5, 2020, The City of Calgary, Landform and Water for Riley signed the contract that grants permission for the drinking fountain to be installed.

We were all so relieved. The contract has been months in negotiation to get the language right. Everyone worried the construction season would arrive before the paperwork was ready. Thanks to Parks Department staff for making sure the documents arrived and to Chris at Landform who made a special trip to our community to sign it in person. Symbolically, we sat together and signed the contract on a picnic table in Riley Park.

In case you wondered, not that anyone ever did, here’s the legal description of the land upon which the drinking fountain will be installed.


Be part of Calgary’s public art legacy;

for Riley Park, for you, and for the future.

Donate to make this vision become reality. At the instructions to seller page, specify that your support is for The Water for Riley Project. The Parks Foundation issues tax receipts for donations greater than $10.00.

We invite everyone to participate as a volunteer, fundraiser, donor, sponsor, or any other role. Call 403 862 1923 and leave your contact information.See our story in a video http://www.waterforriley.org/2018/07/acad-w4r-video/