Balmoral Beach Sewer Pipe Maintenance October 21 through Mid-November
The CVRD will be conducting preventative maintenance work on two sections of a sewer pipe that runs along Balmoral Beach below the Willemar Bluffs. The pipe moves raw sewage from homes and businesses in Courtenay, Comox and K’ómoks First Nation to the treatment plant at Brent Road. It is located on an exposed section of beach that is vulnerable to damage by waves, rocks and logs and poses an environmental risk to our local beaches and ocean.
What to Expect
Work begins October 21 and will continue through mid-November. Due to the location of the pipe some of this work will be completed at night to coincide with low tides. Residents can expect to hear intermittent construction noise throughout the project during nighttime hours.
In order to avoid disturbance to Goose Spit Park and the sensitive areas above the high-tide line, an equipment staging area will be set up at HMCS Quadra to accommodate the machines needed for this work. Staging in this location means that all public access areas, including the beach and parking lots in Goose Spit Park, can remain open for the duration of the project. Signs will be placed along the beach to alert park users about the presence of construction vehicles.
Tracked trucks carrying clean gravel will drive along the foreshore and there will be safety mechanisms in place to avoid interaction with beachgoers and sensitive environmental material above the high tide line. An environmental monitor will be present during construction and equipment will move along a clearly marked pre-determined access route below the high tide line to minimize disruption. Clean gravel will be transported to the two areas of concerns along the sewer forcemain at Balmoral Beach where it be spread out with an excavator to cover exposed areas. Any potential impacts to the park during this work will be repaired.
The CVRD owns and operates a sewer pipe that runs from the Courtenay Pump Station to the treatment plant on Brent Road, including approximately two kilometres along Balmoral Beach between Goose Spit and Curtis Road below the Willemar Bluffs. Since 2002, annual inspections along this portion have been performed to monitor the depth of cover above the pipe. Over the past few years monitoring has revealed continued reduction in the depth of cover along sections of the pipe, and in 2020 the monitoring report noted that in two areas the depth of cover has decreased substantially and is in need of additional cover to mitigate the risk of the pipe being exposed to wave action.
Failure of a sewer pipe in this area would have significant health and safety, marine and coastal environment consequences. This pipe is at greatest risk of failure in winter months due to winter storms and wave action. The CVRD is currently working on a Liquid Waste Management Plan process looking at conveyance options that would remove the forcemain from the foreshore by 2023. For more information about this plan please visit our project page.
Please click the link below to speak with a member of our project team.