Boil water notices related to turbidity have occurred for communities with water supplied from Comox Lake – including City of Courtenay, Town of Comox, and other electoral area water local service areas. These events plus recent water quality monitoring in the lake have led the Vancouver Island Health Authority to make a final decision that both filtering and disinfection must be provided. Given this decision, the Comox Valley Regional District (CVRD) has commissioned Opus and a multi-disciplinary team to complete a review of water intake from Comox Lake and related treatment options.
The resulting project is focused on the components necessary to meet the treatment requirements set out by the Vancouver Island Health Authority. This includes:
1. Water Supply from Comox Lake – a new intake within Comox Lake or potentially on the Puntledge River, sized for a 50-year design life and projected flow rates to service the communities that participate in the CVRD water service function.
2. Water Treatment Plant – a new Water Treatment Plant must include filtration and disinfection. This must be sized to meet at least the existing maximum day demand (summer flows) but with turn-down to average winter day demand. The facility also will include facilities for treated water storage, and space for management of water treatment residuals.
3. Conveyance from Intake to Water Treatment Plant – a new pumping station will be needed near the intake location, lifting water to a pipeline that runs between the intake and the Water Treatment Plant.
4. Treated Water Pipeline – a new treated water pipeline will be required from the Water Treatment Plant to the water distribution system.
General Project Timeline – The project timeline extends from November 2015 to June 2016. Early parts of the project involve detailed topographic survey and technical review of intake and treatment options. Identification of existing geotechnical, archaeology and environmental values in the study area will run in parallel.
Once this background is understood, the CVRD and Opus team will work closely with community stakeholders over the the first quarter of 2016 to review options, at the conceptual level, to provide improved water intake, treatment and delivery. The draft and final water treatment options study, due by end of June 2016, aims to develop a long-term strategy to provide reliable water that meets current health standards to the community while protecting the ecological, economic and cultural values of the lake and valley.