The City of Abbotsford has won a community excellence award for turning rain drops into puck drops.
The city was lauded at the annual UBCM conference on Thursday for its leadership and innovation in setting up a rainwater capture system in 2011 to create ice at the Abbotsford Entertainment and Sports Centre.
The Union of British Columbia Municipalities awards recognize cities that have implemented outstanding events or projects that serve as examples to other local governments.
The first project of its kind, the AESC system harvests rainwater and melted snow from the roof of the arena and reuses it to produce and maintain the ice in the hockey rink. The arena's roof is 12,000 square feet (1,333 square metres) and can col-lect up to up to 1,736,000 litres of water per year.
The AESC system can generate 30,000 litres of water for every 25 mm of rain. The project can save approximately 830,000 litres of water each hockey season.
The system is expected to generate $3,186 in water, sewer, and energy cost savings each year. The cost of installing the system in the summer of 2011 was $27,000 and it is expected to pay for itself within eight years.