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Metro Vancouver's mega water main dig through Coquitlam due to start in 2022

A mega water main that was due to be installed through Coquitlam this year is now expected to start in 2022, according to Metro Vancouver.
Coquitlam Main Water Project - 30 Jun 2021
A map of the Metro Vancouver water main dig, due to start in 2022 in Coquitlam.

A mega water main that was due to be installed through Coquitlam this year is now expected to start in 2022, according to Metro Vancouver.

The Coquitlam Water Main Project — set to run from the base of Mariner Way to the top of Pipeline Road — is delayed as the design process is taking longer than expected, a spokesperson for the regional authority told the Tri-City News.

As a result, the site preparation will begin early next year, with the pipe being put in the ground on Pipeline Road — between David Avenue and Guildford Way — in late 2022.

The city of Coquitlam is also expanding that section of Pipeline Road during the construction period, from two to four lanes north of Guildford Way.

The aim of the capital project is to increase the amount of drinking water to the growing number of Metro Vancouver residents, linking the new main from the Coquitlam reservoir to the region’s Cape Horn pump station and reservoir, at Mariner Way and Riverview Crescent.

The 12-km route will see the pipe, which ranges in diameter from 2.2 to 3.2 metres, tunnelled for two kilometres from Dewdney Trunk Road to Guildford Way, with other sections to be built in an open trench and within a closed worksite.

The tunnelling technology has yet to be determined, said Greg Valou, a communications specialist for Metro Vancouver.

The pipe project is set to be finished and commissioned in 2029.

“Metro Vancouver will continue to provide updates to the community about the construction schedule throughout the detailed design process, and will takes steps to minimize impacts to the community wherever possible,” Valou told the Tri-City News. “This includes keeping traffic moving safely and efficiently, finding convenient solutions to property access, monitoring and managing noise, ensuring safety and protecting the environment.”

As well, public input will be sought as the project advances.

The work ties in with Metro Vancouver’s plans to bring a new treatment facility at the north end of Pipeline Road. 

The Greater Vancouver Water District (GVWD) is now seeking a Crown Land Tenure Application from the provincial government to undertake investigative testing of the now-defunct Lafarge aggregate mine site as well as the adjoining Crown land at the top end of the Pipeline corridor.

Totalling 403 acres, the two Crown properties are being eyed by the GVWD for a $2.5-billion water supply project: a new upper Coquitlam Lake intake and a new water treatment plant that would link into the GVWD’s upcoming Coquitlam Water Main Project.

Currently, Coquitlam Lake provides 33% of the region's water; that is expected to increase to 60% by the end of the century.