Oak Bay digs in to trenchless technology for Uplands project

Committee to hear information on directional drilling abilities for sewer separation

Uplands sewer separation is on the agenda for Monday night.

Council expects to hear from a directional drilling professional during its committee of the whole meeting.

“Because there was quite a bit of interest from the public on technologies that would avoid having to dig up the streets, we decided to invite someone who is an expert in that area to talk about it so council and the members of the public have an opportunity to ask them direct questions,” said Jack Hull, project manager.

Under the Municipal Wastewater Regulation, Oak Bay is required to separate the existing combined stormwater and sanitary sewer system in the Uplands neighbourhood. Also, during heavy rainfall, the volume of water exceeds capacity of the system, sending overflows into the ocean at the Rutland and Humber pumping stations.

David O’Sullivan, president of PW Trenchless Construction Inc., visited the area last Friday, and will offer his expertise in the use of trenchless technology on the installation of pipes.

“We took him on a tour so he could see first hand what the issues are and be able to tailor his presentation to address our specific situation,” Hull said.  “People should come with an open mind, we’re not prejudging at this point. It’s important council understands the issues and implications so they’re more informed when it comes to choosing which option to pursue and how to pursue it.”

The committee meeting starts at 7 p.m. at Oak Bay municipal hall.

Directional drilling questions were among a few that came from multiple public consultation sessions and a special committee meeting in February.

Council also tasked staff with investigating easement use on private property as part of the project and approved a request for proposals for a geotechnical investigation. Six proposals came in on the RFP and council will likely see a recommendation to award a contract during its May 24 council meeting.