Longueuil, Quebec strives towards better water future with new projects


Despite recent challenges with sewage overflows, the Quebec city of Longueuil has two significant projects in the works that officials hope will change the narrative when it comes to water.

First, Longueuil has initiated a $11.8-million loan process for the reconstruction of its 1940s-era drinking water plant. And second, upgrades to the Center d’épuration Rive-Sud wastewater treatment plant, to replace obsolete equipment have been going according to plans, officials announced.

The changes come on the heels of a 2020 report from The Fondation Rivières that found the municipality had the worst record in Quebec when it comes to flushing sewage into local waterways.

This month, Longueuil’s wastewater treatment plant, commissioned in 1992, replaced a bar screen filter system designed to remove objects such as rags, wipes and plastics, and protect pumps from clogging. Another two screens will be replaced late in 2022.

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“This operation is a success and demonstrates all the work that was done before and during the work to reduce the downtime of the bar screen and thus minimize the risk of untreated water overflowing into the river,” announced Mayor Catherine Fournier in a statement.

As part of the screen replacement, a single overflow was carried out, when significant amounts of rain fell in southern Quebec, officials announced.

Fournier added that $38 million will be invested over three years to modernize the plant’s wastewater treatment equipment, including $31 million for the plant itself, the only facility that treats wastewater in Boucherville, Brossard, Longueuil and Saint Lambert, she stated.

Longueuil also intends to invest $101 million over the next three years to modernize its drinking water and wastewater facilities located throughout the territory created from de-amalgamation. These investments are part of the 2020-2030 Water Strategy and other major investments are also expected, approaching $600 million over 10 years.

The proposed drinking water plant upgrades — set for debate at council in March — are the result of a study that shows how the facility must be brought up to standard, in order to continue to ensure production and meet the current and future needs of the population.

“It is important to increase the resilience of water supplies in the face of the challenges posed by climate change,” Mayor Fournier announced. “Thus, with the reconstruction of the plant, the robustness of the network is improved in the event of breakdown or work in the two other drinking water plants in the agglomeration,” she added.

Longueuil draws its water from the St. Lawrence River.

Additional photos of the wastewater upgrade project can be viewed on the municipality’s Flickr page.


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