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Comox Valley Water Treatment Project

Owner: Comox Valley Regional District  |  Courtenay, BC


About the Project

Comox Valley Regional District (CVRD) provides the regional water supply to 50,000 residents in the Courtenay, Comox, and the K’omoks First Nation. Prior to the new water treatment system, the community suffered from numerous boil water advisories. Recognizing the importance of having a safe and reliable supply of drinking water, the CVRD commenced fast track planning and procurement of a new water treatment project. CVRD selected design build as the preferred delivery method to meet the tight scheduling requirements.

Working in collaboration, Stantec and Aecon successfully delivered the $126 million Comox Valley Water Treatment Project (CVWTP) in a record setting 26. The new water treatment plant and conveyance system can supply 75 MLD treated water and is expandable to 120 MLD.

The new system consists of a new lake intake accessing cooler, higher quality raw water from Comox Lake, a new lake shore raw water pump station, new direct filtration water treatment plant with UV and chlorine disinfection, and a treated water transmission main. An alternative intake site in Comox Lake was selected to reduce the length of the intake, while also achieving the desired depth for water extraction. The 1600 mm diameter intake pipe was tunneled into the lake avoided environmental impact on the lake and fisheries habitat. To preserve the natural landscape while addressing noise concerns for residents, the design included an underground pump station at Comox Lake.

The modern water treatment system for Comox Valley residents is now in operation – meeting all regulatory standards and removing the need for turbidity-related boil water advisory notices. The new system reduces turbidity and removes the risk of viruses and bacteria in the community drinking water, providing a secure supply of reliable, high-quality drinking water for decades to come. The architecture for the facility is stunning and incorporates glue laminated beam construction and K’ómoks First Nation artwork.


A design-build delivery model was used to meet Comox Valley Regional District’s accelerated schedule. The Aecon/Stantec integrated design-build team worked in close collaboration with the CVRD team, including O&M staff, KFN, BC Hydro, Island Health throughout the entire project to successfully deliver the project within the planned schedule of just over 2 years. Our partnership with K’ómoks First Nation enabled the integration of their art and community facilities into the design.

The design was completed six months after Notice to Proceed. This included formal stage gate reviews at 30%, 60%, 90% and 100% design. Early work packages and major equipment procurement were issued concurrent with the design package to facilitate construction start. Digital design utilizing virtual reality 3D design was used for all disciplines to accelerate the design process. This allowed an in depth and efficient review process while reducing costs and risks. With Stantec’s multi-disciplinary team, we were able to fast track the design management, scheduling, and risk and cost management.

Under the COVID-19 restrictions, several safety measures were implemented including social distancing, masks, and on site COVID-19 policies to provide a safe environment while maintaining the design and construction schedule. The project was completed on schedule and on budget with zero environmental and safety incidents, and zero cases of COVID-19 despite the challenges brought on by the global pandemic.


The completion of the Comox Valley Water Treatment Project connects over 50,000 residents to clean and safe water. The new water treatment system has eliminated turbidity-related boil water notices and removed the risk of viruses and bacteria in the drinking water. Built with future growth of the region in mind, the new water treatment system is built to accommodate any future treatment that may be needed, providing a secure supply of reliable high quality drinking water for generations to come.

Service(s) Provided
• Prime Consultant
• Complete detailed design services for all discipline engineering and architectural services
• Resident engineering
• General engineering services during construction
• Startup service


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