Five Creeks Stormwater Flood Protection Project

Transportation & Utilities -
Major Project Status
Current Projects

Traffic & Construction Update

Updated: January 19, 2023

The Five Creeks Stormwater Flood Protection Project began in 2019 and construction has been completed from the waterfront at the foot of 31st Street up to the Upper Levels Highway at the Westmount exit. In August 2020, construction crews ran into unanticipated ground conditions within the Highway 1 right-of-way, while tunnelling under Highway 1 at the Exit 7 westbound off-ramp and the work was paused. Work to complete the highway crossing re-started in April 2022.

Construction on the Five Creeks Stormwater Flood Protection Project had been paused in late December 2022 due to the weather conditions, and work resumed in the first week of January 2023. Tunnelling for the crossings under Highway 1 is now complete, and the updates for current work includes:
 
Westmount Road

  • expect potential delays and single-lane alternating traffic on the 3300 block of Westmount Road to facilitate work to tie in the highway crossings to the existing main leg of the stormwater diversion system on the 3300 block of Westmount Road. This work is anticipated to be complete by March 1, 2023, weather and contractor dependent
  • completion of retaining wall works
  • backfill and final grading
  • reinstatement of the pedestrian sidewalk

Westbound on-ramp Exit 8/Cypress Bowl Road

  • anticipated re-opening on or before Friday, January 27, 2023, weather-permitting

Westbound Exit 7/Westmount Road/Westridge Avenue

  • completion of east leg piping and east entry pit
  • completion of west leg piping
  • backfill and final grading
  • asphalt repairs
  • anticipated re-opening in early March 2023, weather-dependent

Current Work

Updated project timeline and impacts
 
As provided in the August 25 update, completion of the current phase of the Five Creeks Stormwater Flood Protection Project has been delayed as a result of ground conditions encountered under the highway, technical issues with equipment, and permitting amendments required by the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure.
 
The contractor has confirmed they will be combining this current work on completing the East Leg crossing with the next phase that was originally intended to take place next year. As such, construction on the project will remain active through the remainder of 2022, and potentially into early spring of 2023 to complete the East Leg crossing and creek intake works. Like other major construction projects currently, the schedule may be influenced by factors such as weather and supply chain.
 
While this means that the two Highway 1 access closures will remain in place for fall and winter, combining the two phases takes advantage of retaining the specialized equipment and crew that is already mobilized and allows for completing the project and commissioning the diversion system earlier than anticipated. This is beneficial as it brings online a much-needed flood mitigation system that impacts a broad area of West Vancouver, benefiting neighbourhoods both above and below the highway.
 
The primary impacts of this work are the closure of two highway access points. These closures will remain in effect while work continues:

  1. Westbound Exit 7/Westmount Road/Westridge Avenue will remain closed. All westbound traffic seeking to exit Highway 1 at Exit 7/Westmount Road/Westridge Avenue will continue to be detoured via Exit 4/Woodgreen Drive/Headland Drive.
  2. Westbound on-ramp Exit 8/Cypress Bowl Road will remain closed, impacting westbound traffic seeking to enter Highway 1. All traffic seeking to enter Highway 1 westbound at on-ramp 8/Cypress Bowl Road will continue to be detoured per the construction signage on-site.

Thank you for your patience as we complete this necessary work.
 
Hours of construction

Please be aware that work carried out by the District is exempt from the Noise Control Bylaw 4404, 2005, which regulates construction hours.
 
Blasting work

All blasting will be overseen by a qualified professional working within the best practices guide for urban blasting operations and will be completed in accordance with District regulations and bylaws.
 
Vegetation clearing

Vegetation clearing is required as part of the work to prepare the area for construction of the diversion and intakes. Owing to the location, both Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure (MoTI) and Ministry of Environment approvals have been obtained. In addition, vegetation clearing related to the reinstatement of an existing access road access to MoTI infrastructure is included as part of this work.
 
District road restoration and improvements

Road restoration and planned District capital road improvement works that were temporarily put on hold to accommodate the Five Creeks Stormwater Flood Protection Project are now scheduled to begin this fall and are expected to take six to eight weeks to complete. These works include cycling and pedestrian safety improvements including sidewalk and curb upgrades, pavement markings, sightline improvements, bicycle lanes, accessibility improvements and installation of speed humps.

For more information on the active transportation, pedestrian, and road safety improvements on 31st Street to Westmount please visit the project page:

Westmount Active Transportation, Pedestrian, and Road Safety Improvements


Frequently Asked Questions

The District has received calls and emails from concerned residents looking for more information or clarification of existing information on the Five Creeks Stormwater Flood Protection Project. We'd like to address those questions.

View frequently asked questions

What are we doing?

In 2013, the District of West Vancouver adopted an Integrated Stormwater Management Plan (ISMP) to address concerns of overland flooding within the watershed area referred to as the Five Creeks, for the benefit of both existing and future neighbourhoods below and above the Upper Levels Highway. The name Five Creeks comes from the fact that the watershed contains Pipe, Westmount, Cave, Turner, and Godman Creeks.

This plan calls for a stormwater pipe to run through the Westmount and Altamont neighbourhoods from north of the Upper Levels Highway down to the Burrard Inlet at the foot of 31st Street.

The new stormwater pipe will address concerns related to flooding and erosion by diverting excess stormwater out of the creeks during extreme weather events, safely conveying the flow into the ocean.

The project entails the construction of a large-diameter stormwater pipe that will run from above the Upper Levels Highway, down to a new outfall at the Burrard inlet. Intake structures installed on the creeks will capture any significant stormwater that will overflow the creek banks and divert the excess flow into the pipe. 

Managing storm-level flows within these creeks will reduce the impacts of intense storms in Westmount and Altamont—both present-day levels and anticipated increasing levels of severity due to climate change.

The project's construction will be broken down into sections and completed in phases. In order to reduce the duration of disruption as much as possible, there may be times when multiple crews will be working at different sections of the project. The remaining phases of construction will include the following:

  • Highway pipe crossings underneath the Highway 1 right-of way and Highway 1 Westbound Exit 7 off-ramp.
  • Connection of highway pipe crossings to existing stormmain along the 3300 and 3400 block of Westmount Road.
  • East leg of the storm diversion pipe and creek intake structures north of the Upper Levels Highway.
Why are we doing it?

The District completed an Integrated Stormwater Management Plan (ISMP) in 2013 that identified 18 existing culverts and 24 existing channel sections below the Upper Levels Highway as being inadequate to safely convey high flow storm runoff. 

In addition, the ISMP indicated that the creeks within the watershed may not have sufficient capacity to handle extreme natural storm events—which are increasing due to climate change— without flooding and significant erosion of the creeks. To reduce the risk of flooding, it was determined that the best solution is a new stormwater pipe that to collect excess water from the creeks and safely convey this stormwater directly to the ocean.

The project is required to reduce in-stream impacts on existing homes, many of which were built within stream setbacks and even on top of creeks. The stormwater diversion eliminates the need for the District to upgrade or replace the existing under-capacity culverts and channels.

Purpose

The purpose of this storm diversion project is to contain extreme stormwater flows from the watersheds of Pipe Creek, Westmount Creek, Cave Creek, Turner Creek and Godman Creek before they can impact the Rodgers Creek, Westmount and Altamont neighbourhoods. 

Benefit

The project will increase the level of flood protection for approximately 800 homes below the Upper Levels Highway and reduce erosion hazards, protect life and property in these neighbourhoods, and protect the watershed health of the Five Creek drainage areas.

Description of work

  • Storm diversion pipe and intake structures.
  • Blasting may be required in some areas during construction owing to the topography and natural ground conditions of the area, a pre-blasting survey will be conducted by the blasting company for all residents located within 60 meters of a proposed blasting site, access to the residence is required (for a complete per blast survey).
  • Road reconstruction resurfacing, with sidewalk installation.
  • Boulevard restoration.
Impact on residents

Construction of a large infrastructure project will have an impact on the neighbourhood. It will create inconvenience for residents. However, the inconvenience is temporary and the District is working to minimize the impact as much as possible.

Traffic management and pedestrian safety

Onsite traffic control persons will manage pedestrian, cyclist and vehicle safety through the construction zone.

Please remember that traffic control persons and signage are there for your safety, as well as the safety of the construction workers. Please respect all signage and personnel.

Construction hours will follow the District’s Noise Control Bylaw. Construction will be permitted from are 7:30 a.m.–5:30 p.m., Monday to Friday, or Saturdays between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. as required to complete work on schedule.

During stormwater diversion construction:

  • Work to complete the highway crossing will require a 12 to 14 week full closure of Highway 1 Westbound Exit 7.
  • Work to tie-in the crossings into the existing diversion system will require intermittent, single-lane alternating traffic along the 3300 and 3400 blocks of Westmount Road.
  • Traffic control personnel will be on-site during construction hours to help facilitate access for local traffic and emergency vehicles.
  • Parking will be restricted on the road and boulevards during the construction.
  • Temporary no parking signs will be installed prior to the work.

Construction details and schedule

Area map of 2022 work

Traffic management plan 

Impact on Blue Bus

Due to the construction  along 31st Street, the 253 will be re-routed to 24th Street, along Mathers and up to Highway 1. Bus stops in the construction area will be temporarily inactive. We first considered a detour route through Hillcrest but, after listening to concerns voiced by residents, the 253 was re-routed to 24th Street.

Bus #253 detours

There may be impacts to Blue Bus service during road restoration. Please check back for updates or sign up to receive updates by email.