Erin wastewater treatment system construction expected to be complete October 2024

ERIN – Despite some changes to the original schedule, all work for Erin’s multi-million dollar wastewater treatment plant is expected to be completed by October 2024.

Town infrastructure services director Nick Colucci presented council with a report last month focusing on construction, communication and future work.

“We had some delays in receiving approvals,” Colucci explained in a later email to the Advertiser.

“As a result, the servicing work on the trail is delayed to this fall, the pumping station will start late summer, and the water resource recovery facility outfall will be completed in the spring of 2024.”

His July presentation marked the third to council this year on the multi-faceted project, following others in February and March.

Wastewater treatment plant

The treatment plant, located along Wellington Road 52, is progressing with footings established for all buildings.

Once equipment on order arrives, it will be installed, council heard.

Erin infrastructure services director Nick Colucci provides town council with an update on work related to the a new waste water treatment plant system on July 13. Photo by Jordan Snobelen

Gravity sewers

Linear work for gravity sewers continues in Erin and Hillsburgh villages.

The most complex work is yet to occur along Main Street in Erin, with a tunnelled project involving eight shafts.

The first is located at Main Street and the Elora Cataract Trailway, and the final shaft will be located on Main Street, south of Wellington Road 124.

Two-traffic flow will be maintained at each shaft location with diversions around the work planned.

“Some of those will require a widening of the road, opposite the shaft,” Colucci told council.

Along Main Street, near Church Boulevard, some parking will inevitably be lost to accommodate the diversion.

Councillor Cathy Aylard was shocked by photos seen in Colucci’s presentation aimed at illustrating what a work site could look like.

A photo included in a July 13 presentation to Erin council shows a 2022 project site located at Silverthorn Avenue and Kenora Crescent in Toronto.


“Is this real? Is this what we can expect?” Aylard said.

“You lost me at this … it’s shocking,” she continued to say. “And we’re going to have eight of these?”

Colucci said the workspace will be smaller, but as is shown in the photos, there will be a crane, pipes piled, a generator, and sea containers for storage.

Councillor Jamie Cheyne said traffic during the Erin Fall Fair weekend in October would be a challenge, but Colucci assured that the contractor has committed to cleaning up “as much as they can” during the weekend.

Elora Cataract Trailway

A gravity sewer has yet to be installed beneath the Elora Cataract Trailway, with an access agreement from the Credit Valley Conservation authority granted on July 14.

A map illustration included in a July 13 presentation to Erin council shows the wastewater system project overview.


That work is expected to be complete in October 2024, according to Colucci.

“It’ll start with tree clearing, and then proceed to underground servicing,” Colucci said.

“That underground servicing will start at the intersection of the trail and Main Street, and then work its way over to Hillsburgh.”

Lion’s Park pumping station

Changes have been made to the location of a pumping station in Lion’s Park by Water Street and Hillview Avenue.

“During the design phase that structure was moved from the west side of the park to the east side,” Colucci explained.

The move allowed the town to meet limitations to creek floodlines, but now requires another shaft to be installed.

“The original structure was very close to shaft six, so we didn’t need an extra shaft,” Colucci explained of the changes.

Work should begin this month, but the town awaits a price adjustment to the original estimate of around $3 million for the work based on a redesign.

Councillor Bridget Ryan expressed alarm about the changes.

“Our costs have gone up from $69 million to $129 million,” Ryan said.

“Again, those costs are covered by the development agreements and paid fully by the developers,” Colucci responded.

Twin forcemain, outfall work

Tunneling from Lions Park to the treatment facility for a twin forcemain will begin after the eighth and final shaft is in place, council heard.

Work along Wellington Road 52 to Winston Churchill Boulevard, for effluent outfall, is largely completed with some restoration work remaining, Colucci said.

The outfall location itself, where treated wastewater will exit the system into the West Credit River, is expected to be complete next spring.

Cooling wastewater

An Environmental Compliance Approval requires the town to cool water to 19 degrees Celcius before it enters the river.

A detailed design is still in the works, however the provincial environment ministry has accepted a design summary.

A July 13 presentation to Erin council included this slide showing methods that will be used to cool treated effluent before it’s emptied in the West Credit River.


The intricate system includes three elements: covers and shades over tanks and clarifiers; mechanical chillers; and the pre-cooling of heated water by future water-intensive businesses before the water hits the town’s system.

Once the province approves the detailed design, the equipment will be priced out and installed prior to the plant coming online.

The environmental approval also demands river water monitoring. The Credit Valley Conservation authority is preparing pricing to do the monitoring.

Communication strategies

In addition to mailing construction notices, council heard notices are being posted on the town’s website and on social media channels.

Posts to Facebook have garnered between 662 and 1,362 views, with considerably less on Instagram and Twitter, slides from Colucci’s presentation indicated.

Bi-weekly drop-in information sessions have been held in both villages with attendance ranging from nobody to a peak of eight people.

Erin infrastructure services director Nick Colucci provides town council with an update on work related to the a new waste water treatment plant system on July 13. Photo by Jordan Snobelen


Colucci said the town will be running advertisements for future meetings in August and September in local, print newspapers.

Social media messaging “is not getting through,” councillor Bridget Ryan said.

“I really applaud you moving over to some other less current means like newsprint,” she said, adding that Erin Radio should also be included.

Councillor Jamie Cheyne said late-night drop-in meetings may get more residents involved.

Future servicing

Once the key pieces of the new system are constructed, Colucci said local servicing will be required to connect residents.

When and if the town receives future government funding, the lines will be designed and constructed as part of a future endeavour.

“The tunnel portion of Main Street (in Erin) will also require a local sewer to be constructed at a future date,” Colucci said.

“Homes along Trafalgar Road [in Hillsburgh] are being connected to the sewer as we go by,” he added.

“We’re also constructing a water main … down to the [Elora Cataract Trailway]. So those homes will also be able to connect to the water main once the project is completed,” he said.

Next will be servicing development areas, which Colucci said “might happen sooner than we think.”

“The first project to proceed external to the development will be on the Solmar property” he said.

Additional work over the next few years will also involve connecting development lands to the system.

A date for the next update to council has yet to be set.