The Capital Regional District is working with the Magic Lake Estates Water and Sewer Local Services Committee to address the issues facing the aging and failing sewer infrastructure in Magic Lake Estate (MLE).

The condition of the MLE wastewater infrastructure has been documented in past reports and presented at a number of Public Open Houses held on November 22, 2014, June 6, 2015, and February 27, 2016.

In March 2016, the Electors of the MLE sewer system approved borrowing of $1.53 million to complete Phase 1 upgrades to the system which included:

  • Construction of Chart Drive Pump Station and Forcemain
  • Construction of the replacement sewer along the south-east side of Buck Lake
  • Condition assessment of the Schooner Wastewater Treatment Plant aeration tank
  • Video inspection and condition assessment of all the sewer pipes

Other infrastructure needs to be repaired or replaced in order to comply with Ministry of Environment permits. The CRD and MLE Sewer Committee have prepared three options of various phasing of upgrades for the community to consider. This information was presented at an Open House on April 27, 2019 which was attended by approximately 125 people. Feedback from the public was received until June 2, 2019 and the total number of forms received (by hand, email and electronically), totalled 133.

A summary of the responses received are documented in the Public Feedback Summary Report (see Additional Resources).

The CRD Board, at their July 10, 2019 meeting, directed staff to implement a referendum process under Section 344 of the Local Government Act and that the General Voting day be held on Saturday, November 23, 2019.

Referendum Results

Yes 207 (85%)
No 36 (15%)
Total Number of Ballots Cast 243

The referendum results were therefore declared positive.The results and the Loan Authorization Bylaw were sent to the Inspector of Municipalities for the 30-day quashing period and the Inspector has provided a Certificate of Approval. The CRD can now proceed to borrow funds from the Municipal Finance Authority in accordance with the Loan Authorization Bylaw.

Grant Application

The second intake of the Green Infrastructure – Investing in Canada Program was announced in the fall of 2019. The CRD has recently submitted an application for about $5.65 million funding that would enable most all of the work identified in Phase 1, 2 and 3 to be completed. While there are no guarantees, we remain hopeful that the funding agencies will view this application positively because the community has committed to their share of the funds (through the successful referendum). The Province has indicated that results of the grant applications could be announced in early 2021.

Next Steps/Schedule for Proposed Upgrades

Generally, the next steps and tentative schedule for the proposed upgrades are as follows:

  1. Complete a Project Plan for the upgrades that defines the scope, schedule, budget, etc.
  2. Prepare a Request for Proposals document to solicit consulting services for the design of the replacement sewers and manholes
  3. Retain the consultant, complete the design and tender it for construction by early summer.
  4. Complete construction on some of the replacement sewers and manholes by the end of 2020.
  5. Announcement for the grant application is expected in Q1, 2021.
  6. If we are successful in getting a grant, then Phase 1, 2 and 3 can be completed in 2021 to 2022.
  7. If we are not successful in getting a grant, then just the remainder of Phase 1 will be completed in 2021.

For a description of what is included in Phase 1, 2 and 3, view slides 11-15 on the Information Boards.

Information letters and further updates to our website will be provided prior to construction of the replacement sewers this summer. Further updates will be provided when more information becomes available.

COVID-19 Impact

The current COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in a declared provincial health emergency and the closure of many businesses. The CRD intends to proceed with retaining a consultant to complete the design of the sewer upgrades, but work may not commence until the provincial health emergency order has been lifted. Therefore, the overall schedule of the Magic Lake Estates Wastewater Renewal Upgrades will be delayed. We will provide an updated schedule when possible. Thank you for your understanding and please take care of yourself and your community over the coming weeks and months.

Additional Resources

2020 Project Update and Prepayment Option

2019 Open House Information

Committee Meetings and Staff Reports

Annual Reports

Want to know if you are in the service area? Magic Lake Sewerage Service Area

For more information, please contact:

Malcolm Cowley, P.Eng.
Manager, Wastewater Engineering and Planning
Tel: 250.360.3066
Mobile: 250.812.7773