Comox Valley Water Treatment Project

Visit our new photo gallery to view our top construction milestones.

Crews preparing to sink a section of the marine pipeline that will draw water from Comox Lake (March 2021)
Photo Caption: Crews preparing to sink a section of the marine pipeline that will draw water from Comox Lake (March 2021)

About the Project

Construction of the Comox Valley Water Treatment Project kicked off in fall 2019 and is well underway. The new system, scheduled for completion in 2021, will comply with the provincial surface water treatment objectives guideline and deliver three main benefits:

  • Eliminate the need for turbidity-related boil water notices
  • Remove the risk of viruses and bacteria in our drinking water
  • Provide a secure supply of reliable, high quality drinking water for decades to come

Learn more about why we need a water treatment plant.

    Watch a Timelapse Video

    See how construction progressed on the site last month or check out our library below for a more detailed look back at how the project has evolved since breaking ground in October 2019.

    What's Happening Now:

    • Raw Water Pump Station – At end of April, the raw water pumps were successfully tested, with water flowing from the new intake through the pump station to the water treatment plant. Now, crews are working on finishing touches, including final testing, installing the access hatches and backfilling where needed. 
    • Water Treatment Plant – The new plant is now connected to BC Hydro power. Inside the water treatment building, chemical systems installation is still underway. In the flocculation treatment area (where binding of solids and particles in the raw water happens) the inlet and channels have been filled with raw water from the lake, as part of testing for the pump station. Backfilling around the clearwell and backwash tank is progressing. The filter equipment installation has started, beginning with the air system. 
    • Transmission Mains – At the treated water transmission main, site clean-up and hydroseeding are underway. All work on the raw water transmission main is now complete. 

    Here's what crews are working on through May:

    • Completing backfilling and landscaping at the raw water pump station.
    • Installing the hatch/walkways that will provide access to the below ground pump station.
    • Completing landscaping along the treated water transmission main corridor. 
    • Continuing architectural work in the public lobby and admin building areas at the treatment plant.
    • Continuing hydro-testing of the filter concrete tanks and the filter equipment installation at the water treatment plant.
    • Ramping up start-up and testing of equipment and instrumentation as the treatment plant moves towards the commissioning phase.
    • Continuing to ensure COVID-19 safety precautions are in place so that construction can continue safely.

    For more information check out our latest project newsletter:

      News Highlights

      Partnering with K’ómoks First Nation

      The K’ómoks First Nation (KFN) and the CVRD signed a Mutual Benefit Agreement on September 28, 2018 confirming cooperation and collaboration in the management of water resources in the region. In the signing of this agreement, KFN has stated its support of the Comox Valley Water Treatment Project and the CVRD’s water license application. 

      The CVRD celebrated the start of construction and officially broke ground with the KFN on October 30, 2019 at Comox Lake. From left to right: CVRD director Daniel Arbour, K’ómoks First Nation Councillors Katherine Frank and Richard Hardy, CVRD directors Wendy Morin and Doug Hillian, CVRD Water Committee Chair David Frisch, K’ómoks First Nation Chief Nicole Rempel, CVRD Chair Bob Wells and CVRD director Edwin Grieve.
      Project Cost and Funding

      The Comox Valley Water Treatment Project is estimated to cost $126 million.

      While the project will receive federal and provincial grant funding ($58.5 million) under the Canada Infrastructure Program (ICIP) – Environmental Quality (EQ), there will still be costs for which the CVRD will be responsible.

      The Comox Valley Water System will contribute reserves of $38.5 million and the CVRD plans to borrow up to $29 million over a maximum of 25 years to finance its share of the construction costs.

      The cost of borrowing this money will mean an increase in bulk water rates for users of the Comox Valley Water System. It is estimated the new system will cost roughly $86 per household/year.

      Click here for more information about how we will fund our Water Treatment Project.

      Project Timeline

      The design-build contract was awarded to AECON Water Infrastructure Inc. in July 2019, signaling the start of the construction phase of this project. Some construction related activities (like land clearing) will begin in 2019. Infrastructure construction will begin in 2020, to be complete Spring 2021.

      Project Updates
      October 2020 Project Update

      August 2020 Project Update

      June 2020 Project Update

      April 2020 Project Update

      February 2020 Project Update 

      December 2019 Project Update 

      September 2019 Project Update 

      July 2019 Project Update 

      Background Documents

      For more information about the Comox Valley Water Treatment Project please see the following documents: