Regional District of Nanaimo directors fast-track pipe repair

NANAIMO – Risk of further leaks leads push to fix outflow in Morningside Park.

Regional District of Nanaimo directors voted to fast-track repairs to Greater Nanaimo Pollution Control Centre land section sewage pipe.

There have been leaks in the past year, including one on July 29 that closed Morningside Park. The regional district said there is risk of further leaks of “increasing severity” over the next year, as the current steel pipe is more than 40 years old and failing.

The board approved a motion on Aug. 25 to promptly move ahead with commission and installation of the land portion of the new pipe through Morningside.

Sewage line replacement was already planned as part of an $18-million project.

New land pipe had been installed up to the park in 2014, with remaining land and marine sections originally scheduled for replacement in 2016.

According to Randy Alexander, regional district general manager of regional and community services, the district would like to have work done by late-October, due to tides and wastewater flows associated with this time of year, which presents a tight timeline for construction.

Given the time constraints, there won’t be a tender process, said Alexander. The regional district has already engaged project engineering firm Opus Dayton Knight to fabricate the high-density plastic pipe and the tie-ins, temporary pipe that connects the old and new sections of pipe.

Knappett Industries will do the installation.

“We’ve ordered that pipe and so that’s being fabricated now and once it’s completed and it’s delivered, we will set up to install it, which basically involves cutting into the old pipe at the beach, installing the tie-in piece during low tide, and then coupling those pieces together,” said Alexander.

Alexander estimates the cost of the repairs and pipe installation will be $600,000. The majority of the cost was already part of the budget, but there will be additional cost with tying back into the old line.

“I would estimate that about 80 per cent of the cost will be permanent installation. Funds that we would’ve expended anyway,” said Alexander.

The other 20 per cent will be the temporary pipe tie-in and any associated work, he said.

Work for marine pipe replacement is still anticipated to take place sometime in 2016, according to Alexander.

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