Grinning from ear to ear and flush with pride, a happy Paul Johnston, Director of Campus Services at Trinity Western University, holds up a now historic document. On late Friday afternoon the University made history as it officially connected to the Langley Township water supply for the first time in its 46 year history.
After some final testing, Dean Scovill, Public Health Inspector from the Fraser Valley Health Authority, read the final paragraph of the report to Johnston, Glenn Wallace, Maintenance Supervisor, and Glen Forrester, Vice President for Administration, saying, "Based on the above information and inspection of the water works I see no reason to continue with the water advisory. Trinity Western University is free to use domestic water as they see fit. Congratulations with your new water supply."
Johnston shouted, "Can I kiss you now?" to applause and laughter around the table.
It was a little over a year ago that TWU came under a water quality advisory after a routine test of their aquifer discovered a higher than normal amount of arsenic, a naturally occurring mineral found in well water. TWU immediately responded by alerting the campus about the water quality advisory and then worked with the Fraser Valley Health Authority by installing water purifiers and filtration systems.
This water quality advisory propelled TWU to begin actively looking for a way to hook up with the Langley Township water supply, but it wasn't as easy as it seemed. The costly venture took months to complete, as a mole-like drill had to feed a pipe underground from its campus all the way to the intersection of Glover Road and Springbrook drive.
Dean Scovill commended TWU's crew in this ambitious project saying, "This is a huge project - to run a line all the way to TWU." While motioning to Wallace and Johnston, Scovill continues, "They are the ones that put in the hours to get this thing rolling. I played a small role - these guys played a huge role."
This marks simpler days for those who work in Maintenance and Campus Services at TWU. Since it's inception in 1962, the University has supplied its campus with water drawn from the aquifer. The water, that had a mineral content including zinc and magnesium, often was described by the students, staff and faculty as being "heavy" or "thick" tasting. This high mineral content also caused many pipes to wear out much earlier than normal causing more up keep for maintenance crews.
Says Johnston, "This is huge for us. Where normally a life expectancy of a washing machine or dishwasher is 25 years, we would sometimes only get 5 years as the build up of minerals would damage our machines. We'll be able to recoup this cost over time and we now have a great capacity of water - more pressure and more supply."
Outside, the four raise a glass of the new Langley Township Water and cheer. "We're very, very, very, very, very happy" says Paul Johnston. "I'm really happy this project has been successful and that we now have healthy clean drinking water on campus."
As the four disperse Forrestor stops two students and says, "You can drink the water straight from the tap now." Blank faces erupt in smiles and it suddenly dawns on the two. "This is the best day of my life," one shouts!
Trinity Western University, in Langley, B.C. is an independent Christian liberal arts and sciences university enrolling approximately 4000 students. TWU offers undergraduate degrees in 40 major areas of study ranging from biotechnology, education, nursing, theatre and music, to psychology, communications and biblical studies. TWU's 16 graduate degree programs include counseling psychology, business, theology and leadership, and offers interdisciplinary studies in English, philosophy and history. TWU holds Canada Research Chairs in Biblical Studies, Biotechnology and Interpretation, Religion & Culture.
Last Updated: 2008-02-22