WATCH: Work began on a pipeline in Victoria’s James Bay neighbourhood on Tuesday. Crews weren’t met by protesters but by those simply awed by the spectacle. As Kori Sidaway tells us, the Capital Region’s new sewage pipeline is going in.
A new sewage pipeline started its journey Tuesday under the Victoria Harbour from Ogden Point to McLaughlin Point. It’s part of the Capital Regional District’s $765 million sewage treatment project that’s, so far, on budget and on schedule.
The James Bay community had plenty of worries before the pipes even got to the area, but neighbours are now singing a new tune.
“I love the pipe. Niagara is actually quite a busy street, so with the pipe in place, it’s been really quiet for the last six weeks or so,” says local resident Brian O’Reilly. “So I actually suggested to them that they run it above ground and just keep it on Niagara, because it’s really quieted down the neighborhood.”
O’Reilly admits he wasn’t on board when the plans came out.
“I wasn’t a real supporter of this in the beginning. It’s been a lot less intrusive than I thought it would be,” says O’Reilly. “The parking situation was no problem at all.”
“So as far as I’m concerned, they can leave the pipe there forever,” he added.
But, maybe regretfully for some, the pipe is on its way.
“It could take up to the three days; we’ve already made good progress so far today. We’ve already pulled the pipe. It was laid out to Sir Turner Street, now it’s only to Menzies Street, and we’ve been able to open Menzies Street to traffic, so we’ve been making really good progress,” says Elizabeth Scott, deputy director of the Wastewater Treatment Project.
Because the project is moving so quickly, the next few days will be focused on around-the-clock pulling of the pipeline but also getting the streets running back to normal.
But the crew will be back, and that’s when locals say it will get hectic.
“The fun part is going to be when they start digging up Dallas, because that is a heavily travelled street. And doing that in the middle of tourist season will undoubtedly bring trouble,” says O’Reilly.
Another line of pipe will be put together in the James Bay area that will connect Ogden Point to Clover Point.
“Waste water gets pumped straight out there. We’ll be diverting it to this pipe and that will start about the summer of this year,” says Scott.
Construction will resume in the city’s busiest months to keep the project on schedule. The full project has to be completed by 2020 to comply with federal and provincial regulations.