Ucluelet Water Capacity and Filtration Improvements Project


Proposed District of Ucluelet Water Treatment Upgrades


    • Current Estimate $20,745,400
    • Construction Start: September 2023
    • Construction Completion: October 2026


The District of Ucluelet has experienced decades of water quality challenges. Residents and visitors of the community have concerns ranging from objections of the aesthetics of the often-discoloured water to more serious questions about the potential health impacts of consuming Ucluelet’s water.

Symptoms of Ucluelet’s water quality can be observed at the taps of homes and businesses when the water runs thick and reddish-brown. The taste is unpleasant, and the discolouration is known to leave a residual which stains laundry, dinnerware, bathtubs and sinks. The discolouration in the community’s water appears to increase and decrease without reason and peak with disruptions in the water system – the phenomenon is known locally as “Ukee brown water days.”    

The Problem

Ucluelet’s existing treatment processes and water quality do not meet current regulatory requirements as defined by the Guideline for Canadian Drinking Water Quality. The community’s water sources are high in iron, manganese and turbidity. The necessary addition of chlorine to treat the water for biological contaminants, produces coagulated iron and manganese which builds up in the system, unfiltered by the current treatment technology. Ucluelet’s post-treatment water is consistently testing higher in Manganese, Iron, and turbidity than the regulatory levels require.

The Solution: Water Treatment Upgrade

The proposed water treatment upgrades will treat Ucluelet’s water to within acceptable criteria defined by the Guideline for Canadian Drinking Water Quality as well as increase water storage capacity for estimated District growth.
The estimate scope of work includes the following:

► Upgrade treatment system for Mercantile Creek;
► Upgrade treatment system for Lost Shoe Creek Aquifer;
► Construct a new reservoir.

The Details: Please refer to the project’s Feasibility Study for technical details

      • The proposed water treatment plant at Mercantile Creek is an addition of a single storey building with a footprint of 11m x 9m as well as a 4m x 5m extension for the storage of Clean in Place chemicals and neutralizers.
      • The proposed water treatment at Lost Shoe Creek is an addition of a single storey building with a footprint of 25m x 15m with an internal height of 4.5m with a below grade residuals tank.
      • The proposed Highway Reservoir, which is 1,400m³ will be installed beside the existing Highway Reservoir No.1.