The first phase of an estimated $18-million pipe upgrade project at the Greater Nanaimo Pollution Control Centre, off Hammond Bay Road, is nearly complete, according to the Regional District of Nanaimo.
The first phase consists of replacement of land section pipe that is part of the Departure Bay outfall, according to Sean De Pol, regional district manager of wastewater services. Epoxy-coated steel pipe, 41 years old and reaching the end of its service life, was replaced by thermo-plastic lined reinforced concrete piping, which is larger at 135 centimetres in diameter to account for increased capacity.
De Pol said the piping is fully installed and the contractor, Knappett Industries, will be testing to make sure everything is in order.
“The contractor does the work and they have to design it to certain specs and they will be inspected to ensure that they’ve actually installed it as per the contract,” said De Pol.
Phase 2 is scheduled to begin in summer 2015 and will see replacement of marine pipe, which goes out to the Five Fingers Island area in the waters off of Nanaimo. The regional district recently awarded a $742,000 contract to Opus Dayton Knight to oversee the work, put out a tender and evaluate proposals.
Timing will be key, however, as low tide, a fishery timeframe and weather must be taken into consideration. Failing that, work would take place the following summer.
The land outfall portion had a price tag of $3.5 million but saw $2 million covered by the federal gas tax fund and the remainder coming from taxation and development cost charge reserves.
De Pol said he is hoping part of Phase 2 would be covered by gas tax money as well.
“We will likely have an opportunity to put an application in for that if that is decided as a priority for the RDN,” he said.