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Ready for the big dig? Construction crews to begin water main installation near Coquitlam park

Starting as early as next week, a Metro Vancouver contractor will be on Pipeline Road to prepare the area for the Coquitlam Water Main Project.

Coquitlam residents can expect to see construction crews along a busy road for the next two-and-a-half years.

Starting as early as next week, a contractor for Metro Vancouver will begin preparing the area around Pipeline Road — on the eastern side of Town Centre Park — for a massive dig to install one section of the Coquitlam Water Main Project.

Bob Cheng, director of major projects for the regional authority, told the Tri-City News today (July 5) the contractor, Michels, will be putting up fencing and netting, as well as trailers, on the western side of Pipeline to get the site ready.

And, later in the summer, crews will be cutting down about 300 trees along the right-of-way, as well as do some grading and utility relocation, to create two new lanes — a 1.5-km stretch west of Pipeline Road to Guildford Way.

The watermain itself — measuring in diameter from 2.2 to 3.2 m — will go under a new multi-use path, near the park, starting in the fall; however, the timelines are subject to change given the complexity of the project.

Cheng said residents likely won’t see too many traffic tie-ups along Pipeline Road other than north of David Avenue, where there will be single alternating lanes.

"Unfortunately, nobody likes to be impacted by construction," he said, "but it's important work that we're doing. It's a vital water main that will benefit the region and the City of Coquitlam to address a water distribution shortage."

"It is temporary and we ask for everybody's patience during this time."

Residents can call 604-432-6200 from Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (or 604-451-6610 for after-hours emergencies) to get updates or follow Metro Vancouver on social media; there will also be letters mailed to neighbours, newspaper advertisements and road signs to alert commuters.

Visit or email [email protected] (with Coquitlam Water Main Project in the subject line).

Cheng said Metro Vancouver staff are also now in discussion with the Coquitlam Tennis Club, which has its courts south of the Trevor Wingrove Way/Pipeline Road intersection, about construction noise and dust, and how to retrieve tennis balls.

Meanwhile, after the Robson–Guildford corridor is done, the City of Coquitlam will be updating Pipeline Road. You can visit the city's website for more details.

The Robson–Guildford corridor is the first of four sections for the $1-billion water main installation through Coquitlam:

  • Cape Horn: 2024–2030
  • Pipeline Road North: 2026–2030
  • City Centre Tunnel: 2026–2031

Cheng said the 12-km long pipe installation is expected to be complete in time for another massive water project: the expansion of the Coquitlam Lake drinking water source.

That $4-billion program will include a new treatment plant at the top of Pipeline Road plus a new tunnel and intake system; it is now under design.

Coquitlam Coun. Craig Hodge, who is one of Coquitlam's board directors at the Metro Vancouver table and is a member of the regional authority's water committee, told the Tri-City News that the Coquitlam Water Main Project is necessary as the region is growing in population.

"And while conservation is important to reduce water use and wastage, there is still a growing need for more safe drinking water," he said.

"The Coquitlam watershed is the largest source of new water in the region, but the project is going to need close monitoring to minimize the impact on Town Centre Park and our residents."