Shaping the future of our Sewer Service

SEWER PLANNING FLOWS AHEAD

Thank you to everyone who participated in the development of the Comox Valley Sewer Service Liquid Waste Management Plan- including the many members of the general public who participated in workshops, open houses, online surveys and online information sessions. In particular, thank you to the members of the public and technical advisory committee for their ongoing commitment over the three-year process.

The project team is now preparing the draft plan which will be submitted to the province as the second phase of this three step process. The plan will be submitted to the province for review in fall 2021 and review will take about one year. Based on feedback from the province, the plan will be revised, shared with the community and then submitted for final approval, which is likely to occur in Spring 2024.

For more background on the LWMP - including the process and the outcome - visit www.comoxvalleyrd.ca/lwmp

Sewer Conveyance Project Next Steps

The LWMP identified a preferred conveyance route for new/upgraded sewer pipes and pump stations, which was approved by the Comox Valley Sewage Commission in February 2021. Borrowing was approved through an Alternative Approval Process in July 2021 and this critical work is now moving forward as a separate project due to its urgent nature.

Follow us over at the Comox Valley Sewer Conveyance Project Page for next steps, including:

  • The conveyance route will now move into detailed design, which will determine the specifics of route alignment. Some changes from the conceptual maps shared with the public could be identified to minimize impacts to residents, businesses, archaeological sites, costs and efficiencies. Discussions are underway with the Town of Comox regarding the final route, infrastructure replacement standards and community impacts.
  • The CVRD will continue dialogue with stakeholders and residents. In particular those in the Lazo area with properties located in potential right-of-ways and homeowners with wells.

SEWER PLANNING FLOWS AHEAD

Thank you to everyone who participated in the development of the Comox Valley Sewer Service Liquid Waste Management Plan- including the many members of the general public who participated in workshops, open houses, online surveys and online information sessions. In particular, thank you to the members of the public and technical advisory committee for their ongoing commitment over the three-year process.

The project team is now preparing the draft plan which will be submitted to the province as the second phase of this three step process. The plan will be submitted to the province for review in fall 2021 and review will take about one year. Based on feedback from the province, the plan will be revised, shared with the community and then submitted for final approval, which is likely to occur in Spring 2024.

For more background on the LWMP - including the process and the outcome - visit www.comoxvalleyrd.ca/lwmp

Sewer Conveyance Project Next Steps

The LWMP identified a preferred conveyance route for new/upgraded sewer pipes and pump stations, which was approved by the Comox Valley Sewage Commission in February 2021. Borrowing was approved through an Alternative Approval Process in July 2021 and this critical work is now moving forward as a separate project due to its urgent nature.

Follow us over at the Comox Valley Sewer Conveyance Project Page for next steps, including:

  • The conveyance route will now move into detailed design, which will determine the specifics of route alignment. Some changes from the conceptual maps shared with the public could be identified to minimize impacts to residents, businesses, archaeological sites, costs and efficiencies. Discussions are underway with the Town of Comox regarding the final route, infrastructure replacement standards and community impacts.
  • The CVRD will continue dialogue with stakeholders and residents. In particular those in the Lazo area with properties located in potential right-of-ways and homeowners with wells.

Who likes sewage? We do!

Have a question about the sewer service in Courtenay or Comox? Go ahead and ask us. We love talking about this stuff! 

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  • As a new home owner in the proposed tunnel force main area on Lazo Rd. I am concerned that putting a Statutory Right of Way on my property is going to adversely affect the value of my home should I try to sell. Has any compensation agreement been reached? Contrary to the statement that the cvrd will "continue dialogue with stakeholders and residents in these areas" I have recieved nothing but a mail invitation to a zoom meeting about it. When will we be contacted? Is there an email list to get updates?

    BeeReasonable asked about 1 month ago

    Hello – thanks for reaching out. 

    The alignment for the tunnelled portion of the conveyance line is still being determined. Once the route is finalized, a representative of the CVRD will be in touch with affected property owners to negotiate statutory right-of-ways (SRW) agreements, which will include compensation for any loss of rights over the affected area. This will happen over the fall/winter this year.

    The Zoom meetings that have been held offer the opportunity for the community to be updated of the planning process as it progresses and to ask questions of the project team – these are more general in nature and not specific to SRW negotiation. We will continue to invite the community by mail to these – you’re also welcome to sign up for project updates on this page (sign up box in top right corner). 

    If an SRW is being sought for your property, you will be contacted to discuss negotiations directly in the coming months. If you would like to speak with a project team member please email engineeringservices@comoxvalleyrd.ca. 


  • What portions of the CVRD will have their property taxes raised to pay for this?

    samlharrison asked 5 months ago

    Hello - The Town of Comox and City of Courtenay form the Comox Valley Sewer Service and will fund this project. Costs are estimated at $150/household/yr in those communities.

  • why weren't we asked in the survey what our 1st, 2nd and 3rd choices would be...

    gogoboots asked 10 months ago

    Hello gogoboots: The preferred option will be selected by the Sewage Commission based on the input from the technical and public advisory committee, project team, consulting engineers and the community. Because of the technical nature of these options, we were seeking comment/concerns about each one so that those can be considered in light of whichever option was chosen.

  • During the September 30th webinar, Kris La Rose said that the current forcemain that runs through the foreshore at the foot of the Willemar Bluffs has to be removed. He said that the forcemain “pops up to the Plant near Curtis Road” from the beach. The 4-ft.-in-diameter forcemain infrastructure does not ‘pop up’. It leaves the foreshore underground: through a beach access, crosses underneath Curtis Road and runs through the entire length of private property on Curtis Road, before it reaches publicly-owned CVRD land. In 1982, the Regional District of Comox Strathcona forced the incursion upon the private owner and stripped a swath of second growth trees (“large and valued”), with no replanting being permitted. Mr. La Rose also stated that the CVRD was committed to minimizing the impacts of the proposed changes into the Curtis Road neighbourhood. Does the CVRD’s commitment extend to the removal of the forcemain from the private property on Curtis Road once the current forcemain is decommissioned/abandoned? If not, why not, since the machinery will have to be down in the area anyway to remove the forcemain from the foreshore?

    greendog asked 10 months ago

    The CVRD would be happy to meet with the landowner in question to discuss options for decommissioning or potentially removing the existing forcemain once it is taken out of commission.

  • How many statutory rights of way are anticipated to have to be negotiated with private landowners under the three options?

    greendog asked 10 months ago

    Option 1 is not expected to require any SRW with private landowners. Options 2 and 3 will require SRW for some sections of the tunnelled alignments. Exactly how many and with whom will be determined in the next phase of design to be initiated once a preferred conveyance solution is selected by the sewage commission in late 2020 or early 2021.

  • In the TAC/PAC Minutes, there was mention of the CVRD’s openness to the possibility of water services being provided to property owners in the Lazo Road to Curtis Road areas, if wells might be detrimentally impacted by the conveyance project. What more has come of that query since it was discussed?

    greendog asked 10 months ago

    The CVRD is committed to taking all possible steps to mitigate the risk of groundwater contamination in the area. In the highly unlikely event that a leak were to occur, the CVRD would work with any effected property owners to ensure a safe, reliable source of drinking water. Extension of water services is just one possible approach.

  • Option 3 of the current shortlisted proposals indicates 2 phases. The second phase that replaces the existing line from Courtenay to Jane Place would be deferred and scheduled 15 to 20 years into the future. During the on-line presentation on September 30, 2020 it was indicated that the existing pipe along the foreshore in Comox leading to Jane Place will handle community needs for the foreseeable future. Also the objective of this LWM program is to eliminate the environmental risk along the Willemar bluffs. Should this be this case why would Options 1 and 2 even be considered at this time as both options contemplate replacing an existing suitable line (base on information presented by CVRD) at a substantially higher current capital cost?

    Bill asked 10 months ago

    Hello Bill -  The objective of the LWMP is to create a long-term plan for the Comox Valley Sewer Service. The removal of the at-risk forcemain at the Willemar Bluffs is the portion of the service in most urgent need of addressing, and is a key driver behind the development of the LWMP, but it is not the only objective. 

    For Option 1 (the overland forcemain using traditional cut and cover methods), a phased approach is not possible because it would result in significantly higher requirements for pumping which could put infrastructure that isn’t upgraded at risk. 

    Option 2 is also presented as a single-phase option for a few reasons: there has been expressed interest to remove the foreshore pipe in Comox Harbour, regardless of its current good condition, to avoid the potential for risk, and because – while there’s a higher cost now we do not know what construction costs will be in 15-20 years.

    Let us know if you need any more information,

  • Your uploaded material indicates that the Project is estimated to last two years from the start of construction. If the Phased Option is selected as the preferred option, will it still take two years for completion of the Willemar Bluffs Phase?

    greendog asked 10 months ago

    Hello Greendog. No - the phased approach would mean two, shorter construction phases separated by 15-20 years.

  • When one considers the 40-years of 'disruption' that Curtis Road-area residents have had to put up with since the current system went in, isn't the temporary traffic and noise disruption a temporary drop-in-the-bucket, none of which will impact any one neighbourhood throughout the entire duration of the project, no matter which of the three route options is eventually selected? Even each the phased-option separate projects will be phased, in terms of traffic and noise, correct? And the phased option may mean 15-20 years between the disruptions caused by the two projects, correct?

    greendog asked 10 months ago

    Hello Greendog: Yes, generally construction will move as the work progresses, particularly in areas/options using cut-and-cover techniques, which is why they’ve been marked as ‘medium’ impact. For the tunneling options/areas, there are areas where the disruption will be longer due to laydown area requirements (the pipe has to be assembled before being fed underground). To reflect the extended length of this disruption those areas are marked as ‘high’ impact in the maps. Yes, the phased option would mean 15-20 years before phases of construction. We encourage you to attend a virtual or in-person open house, or call us to speak with a project team member to ensure we can answer all of your questions about the specific impacts to your community.

  • Does the CVRD have unassailable buy-in from KFN for the route proposed through its lands? Is there any risk of a route alteration around KFN's lands in the future should the phasing option be selected?

    greendog asked 10 months ago

    Hello Greendog:  K’ómoks First Nation (KFN) is a valued partner of the CVRD and there has been extensive discussions about these options, as they relate to crossing of Indian Reserve No. 1 (IR1). A memorandum of understanding between the CVRD and KFN regarding sewer has been approved by both parties, and the KFN supports proceeding to the next phase in conveyance public consultation. With KFN approval, staff recommended to the Sewage Commission in March that Option 4a (a route that avoided IR1) not be considered for further study as it involves significantly higher costs and no discernable benefits compared to the options now on the shortlist