The Town of Ladysmith’s recently upgraded wastewater treatment plant has received an Association of Consulting Engineering Companies (ACEC) award for Engineering Excellence. The award submission was brought forward on the Town’s behalf by Opus International Consultants (Canada) Ltd., the engineering firm responsible for the design, construction, and commissioning of the upgraded facility, owned by WSP.

“The work Opus did for the Town was excellent and we were delighted to learn that our world-class wastewater treatment plant has received such a prestigious award,” said Ladysmith mayor Aaron Stone. “Completion of the new facility has significantly improved the quality of the wastewater effluent we discharge to the Ladysmith Harbour, reducing pollution levels and supporting the guiding principles of our Waterfront Area Plan, which places a strong emphasis on restoring the environmental health of local waters.”

The primary objective was to upgrade the WWTP to ensure the protection of shellfish and recreational resources in Ladysmith Harbour. Aesthetic appearance and odour control were identified by members of the local community as important features for the new WWTP, due to the prominent location near residential and recreational areas.

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The combination of effective innovations included in the WWTP and the accompanying new biosolids facility, which takes bio-solids produced at the Wastewater Treatment Plant and transforms them into Class A compost, demonstrates Ladysmith’s independence as it treats its own wastewater from start to finish. As well, numerous sustainability initiatives were incorporated into the design, including solar energy, effluent heat recovery for building heating and cooling, and reclaimed water for irrigation and non-potable plant use.

“The Town’s wastewater treatment strategy is focused on protecting Ladysmith-area waters through innovative design,” said Ladysmith chief administrative officer Guillermo Ferrero. “The ACEC award acknowledges the years of hard work and planning that resulted in a state of the art wastewater treatment facility that is designed to meet current provincial wastewater effluent standards while also anticipating future federal standards for Ladysmith’s growing population.”

Built within a limited, waterfront site footprint, a number of sustainability elements were incorporated into the design of the WWTP including solar energy, effluent heat recovery for building heating and cooling, and reclaimed water for irrigation and non-potable plant use.

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