A small shortage of water meters could cause delays for new apartments and condos

The stock of small water meters used for new apartments and condominiums is insufficient and a councilman fears this could delay occupancy permits for new developments and occupancy dates for tenants.

Com. John Orlikow said the devices are needed for new buildings before an occupancy permit can be granted and he has spoken with developers who fear they may have to put the project on hold.

“This is going to cause a lot of stress for people who are expecting to be in their new apartment or condo and now have to say, ‘Well, we’ll get back to you,'” Orlikow said.

The city told CTV News it has a temporary plan so developments won’t be delayed. The city plans to suspend the use of small water meters and offer single large meters to cover a building, with the option of adding smaller ones as they become more available.

“Due to the shortage and our changed installation practices, the installation of small meters is down about 50% from normal,” the city said.

However, Orlikow said this option may not work for all condos or apartments.

“It’s an option to at least get in there. The problem for the developer, who I spoke to, is how to differentiate who uses what water,” Orlikow said.

The Manitoba Home Builders Association said it is monitoring this issue.

“Our members have indicated that they haven’t been impacted by this yet. But it’s an issue that’s very important to us, so we’ll be working with the city to make sure that if there are any delays, they’re as understated as possible,” said Lanny McInnes, the association’s president and CEO.

The city said it was working with multiple vendors to source small meters.

This shortage does not affect meters for single-family homes.

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