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March 28, 2024, 3:44 pm

Canada, British Columbia, and Local Partners Invest More than $98 Million in Water Infrastructure Improvements Across the Province

Infrastructure Canada
LADYSMITH - Communities across the province will receive significant upgrades to their drinking water and wastewater infrastructure after a combined investment of more than $98 million from the federal and provincial governments, and local partners.   

Announced by Minister Harjit S. Sajjan andMinister Anne Kangthese projects will ensure greater access to clean water as well as proper treatment and sanitation of wastewater.

In Ladysmith, the storage capacity of Holland Lake will be expanded to improve the drinking water supply. The increased capacity will also enable greater water storage during wet months for utilization in drier periods. The project will involve lake dredging to remove debris from the lake bed, reconfiguration of intakes, upgrades to spillways and outlets to improve water flow management, and installation of riprap armoring to prevent erosion. These improvements will ensure continued year-round access to high-quality drinking water for residents, while also safeguarding and preserving infrastructure and mitigating environmental impacts that affect water quality and ecosystems.

Infrastructure improvements to drinking water and wastewater treatment for other communities will involve the construction of new water treatment plants, upgrading existing wastewater treatment plants with filtration and ultraviolet disinfection systems, as well as the installation of new water supply lines and reservoirs. 


“On World Water Day, we reflect on the significance of access to clean and safe water supply and sustainable water treatment management. To support healthy communities and protect ecosystems, we must prioritize upgrades and maintenance of clean drinking water facilities and wastewater treatment systems. With funding allocated to 14 municipalities across B.C., efforts are underway to strengthen and expand their water systems. These initiatives aim to establish essential infrastructure, enabling British Columbians to meet their basic needs and empowering communities to tackle water-related challenges for generations to come.”
The Honourable Harjit S. Sajjan, Minister of Emergency Preparedness and Minister responsible for the Pacific Economic Development Agency of Canada, on behalf of the Honourable Sean Fraser, Minister of Housing, Infrastructure and Communities

“World Water Day reminds us of the crucial need for people to have access to clean and reliable water no matter where they live,” said Anne Kang, Minister of Municipal Affairs. “The Holland Lake Dam Expansion will increase the water supply for people in Ladysmith and the Stz'uminus First Nation, better protecting them against water shortages and summer drought conditions. This work on the dam is a key part of our larger cross government investment in 14 projects throughout British Columbia, where the Province contributed over $31 million. The Holland Lake Dam will provide communities with sustainable water solutions and sanitation for generations to come.”
The Honourable Anne Kang, Minister of Municipal Affairs

“On World Water Day, this significant investment in the raising of the Holland Lake dam better safeguards this secure water source for today and future generations in the face of climate change and growth pressures. Through the renewal of our municipal infrastructure, the Town’s shared investment with the federal and provincial governments prioritizes local water security, which is critical to the long-term economic, environmental, and social well-being of Ladysmith, the Stz'uminus First Nation and the Diamond Improvement District, which depend on Holland Lake as the primary water source during the dry season.”
His Worship Aaron Stone, Mayor of Ladysmith 

Quick facts

  • The federal government is investing $41,289,995 through the Green Infrastructure Stream of the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program. The Government of British Columbia is investing $31,607,507, and local partners are contributing a combined $25.1 million and are responsible for any additional costs. 
  • This stream helps build greener communities by contributing to climate change preparedness, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and supporting renewable technologies.
  • Including today’s announcement, over 114 infrastructure projects under the Green Infrastructure Stream have been announced in British Columbia, with a total federal contribution of more than $512 million and a total provincial contribution of nearly $342.9 million.
  • Under the Investing in Canada Plan, the federal government is investing more than $180 billion over 12 years in public transit projects, green infrastructure, social infrastructure, trade and transportation routes, and Canada's rural and northern communities.
  • Infrastructure Canada helps address complex challenges that Canadians face every day—ranging from the rapid growth of our cities, to climate change, to environmental threats to our water and land. 
  • Federal funding is conditional on fulfilling all requirements related to consultation with Indigenous groups and environmental assessment obligations.

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