Despite significant opposition from citizens (as evidenced in comments about recent related news items), British Columbia’s Capital Regional District (CRD) board confirmed earlier this week that it is proceeding with the current plan and timeline for the Core Area Wastewater Treatment Program.

“In order to meet the timeline outlined by the provincial and federal governments, we will continue with the schedule as outlined in the contribution agreements with the federal and provincial governments,” said CRD board chair Alastair Bryson. Government funding partners have committed $501 million to assist the CRD with the implementation of the plan.

Based on the approval of the plan and the funding agreements, the program management office has been established and advisory consultants retained. Firms are preparing bids for the RFP to construct the McLoughlin Point secondary treatment facility.

There have been suggested alternate approaches that have included a distributed system, with multiple smaller plants. A CRD release states that concept has been “thoroughly evaluated and determined to have larger capital and operating costs and additional siting challenges.”

“Pursuit of a new or parallel process could undermine the independence and work of the commission and significantly delay the entire project,” it adds.

Bryson says the CRD remains committed to finding the most practical, cost-effective system that incorporates innovative technologies, resource recovery opportunities, and working with the communities to provide an opportunity for input into the design parameters of the facilities.

The facilities are expected to be in operation by the spring of 2018.

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