Water Quality Improvement Project Update


The PUC would like to provide the following update on the Water Quality Improvement Project for March:

Implementation of the new blended phosphate and carbon dioxide treatment systems have been completed for all active water production sites across the city. Implementation of the final advanced treatment method, Sodium Carbonate (soda ash) at the water treatment plant, has been delayed while the contractor works to resolve an issue with the control system that was identified during commissioning of the Soda Ash system. The contractor expects to have the issue resolved soon; at that time, all new treatment systems comprising Stage 1 of the Project will be in service.   PUC will continue monitoring water quality and customer feedback as watermains adjust to the new systems.  An independent survey will be conducted in the 4th quarter of 2015 to support a decision whether to advance to Stage 2.

With the first Stage of the Project almost complete, the PUC is directing its attention to its yearly Infrastructure Renewal Projects conducted in partnership with the City. Each year the City and PUC collaborate to reconstruct several roads, including watermains. For 2015, the roadways or sections of roadways tentatively selected for reconstruction in partnership with the City are as follows:

  • Upton Road
  • Kensington Street
  • McMeeken Street
  • Elizabeth Street
  • Huron Street
  • John Street

Customers are reminded that this list is tentative and is subject to change depending on budget approval and resource availability. More information will be posted on the PUC website as the projects are confirmed and work commences.

Customers looking for more information on the Water Quality Improvement Project or the advanced treatment methods are encouraged to visit the PUC website; www.ssmpuc.com or call Customer Service at 705-759-6522 Monday through Friday (9 a.m.-4:30 p.m.).


Improving the City’s water quality has involved incorporating two additional water treatment methods into the existing process; pH level harmonization (with the addition of carbon dioxide and sodium carbonate), and blended phosphates for corrosion control. These treatment methods are being introduced to resolve taste and odour concerns, as well as to reduce both the occurrence of discoloured water and the amount of lead that may be contained in the water at a consumer’s tap.

Carbon dioxide is used in carbonated beverages. Sodium Carbonate (soda ash) is very similar to everyday baking soda and is a common food additive, used in many foods such as chocolate milk, baked goods, beer and wine. Blended Phosphates are another class of food additives that are also added to many familiar foods, including cereals, coffee and tea, flour, coconut milk and many more.