Uplands Sewer Separation - Humber Catchment

This project is the first phase of a sewer separation project in the Uplands neighbourhood, the Humber Catchment. The existing, combined collection system is comprised of two main catchment areas – Humber and Rutland.

The system was constructed in the 1930’s using a single pipe to collect both sanitary sewage (toilets, showers, and sinks) and storm water (rainwater leaders, foundation drains and catch basins in the roads), discharging into the ocean at the ends of Humber Road and Rutland Road. In the early 1990’s, these combined systems were redirected into the newly constructed Capital Regional District pump stations at Humber and Rutland and pumped into a trunk sewer main on Beach Drive. However, during large storm events, which are becoming more frequent, the flow into the pump stations can at times exceed the capacity of the pumps and the excess effluent discharges through the old outfalls into the ocean. In 2016, six options were developed for separating the combined sewer system into separate sanitary sewer and storm sewer systems. The option selected by Council, after a public consultation process, was a new gravity storm sewer system. The existing combined sewer system will become the new separate sanitary sewer system.

The Uplands Sewer Separation project is one of Oak Bay’s major infrastructure commitments under the regional Core Area Liquid Waste Management Plan (CALWMP). Once both phases are complete, the project will eliminate sanitary sewer overflows to the nearshore marine environment, thereby significantly improving health and environmental protection. It will also bring the municipality in compliance with provincial and federal wastewater and environmental protection legislation. Notably, the Province of BC has directed that construction of the Humber catchment area must be complete by 2025. To meet this deadline, the District anticipates that construction will begin in the fall/winter of 2023.

Physical works that will be undertaken as part of the first phase (Humber catchment construction) include:

  • construction of a new gravity stormwater system (approximately 3.5 km), including mains, manholes, catch basins and leads;
  • installation of new service connections to each house (approximately 120);
  • installation of new streetlights, and
  • construction of two new ocean outfalls.

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