Hiawatha First Nation Water Treatment System Upgrades

The proposed project aims to address critical health and safety risks of inadequately treated groundwater used by residents of Hiawatha First Nation. It involves the construction of 14 Point-of-Entry (POE) systems, connecting 11 homes to a planned water distribution system, and the construction of drilled wells for 10 homes. The project will take place on developed land and include minor clearing of grub and vegetation on site as needed. The project does not include works in water, however, the project is occurring throughout the Hiawatha First Nation reserve land and may include locations in close proximity to waterbodies.

The POE systems will utilize a combination of treatment processes involving sediment filters, air injection oxidation filters, granular activated carbon (GAC) filters, cartridge filters, and ion exchange resin to treat groundwater. Primary disinfection will be achieved using ultraviolet irradiation. The POE treatment systems will be housed in an outdoor wooden enclosure and will be built on member-owned land.

11 watermain service connections will be installed to provide access to potable water to residents of the community. These connections will consist of 25mm piping. All service connections will include a shut-off valve, a water meter, backflow preventor, and a pressure-reducing valve in an accessible location inside the residence. Pipe penetrations for service connections will be located below the frost line and hydraulically sealed prior to commissioning.

In addition, 10 groundwater wells will be drilled at residences affected by low yield and water quality issues with the existing wells. Existing wells will be decommissioned. The UR has indicated that this approach may have the potential to impact groundwater levels in the aquifer. Pump rates will be set so as to not exceed the maximum recharge rate of the well.

The existing infrastructure at all construction areas include overhead hydro lines on hydro poles, underground telephone lines along Hiawatha Line, Lakeshore Road, and Paudash Street. Septic fields on private property have also been identified and appropriate precaution/mitigation will be defined with direct communication with the utility owner prior to finalizing any design drawings.


Latest update

Notice of Determination 

March 20, 2023 - Infrastructure Canada has determined the proposed Hiawatha First Nation Water Treatment System Upgrades (the Project) is not likely to cause significant adverse environmental effects. 

This determination was based on a consideration of the following factors:

  • Impacts on rights of Indigenous peoples;
  • relevant potential environmental effects;
  • comments received from the public; and
  • technically and economically feasible mitigation measures. 

Mitigation and monitoring measures taken into account for this determination included active and adaptive management measures that would be implemented for the protection of the local environment. Based on the consideration of these measures, Infrastructure Canada is satisfied that the carrying out of the Project is not likely to cause significant adverse environmental effects. 

Therefore, Infrastructure Canada may carry out the Project, exercise any power, perform any duty or function, or provide financial assistance to enable the Project to be carried out in whole or in part. .


Key documents

Key documents
Document Number Document Title File Date
2 Notice of Determination - March 20, 2023


Infrastructure Canada
Taslema Khan, Indigenous Consultation and Environmental Assessment Officer
Telephone: 343-551-0416
Email: taslema.khan@infc.gc.ca

  • Location

    • Project Area (Ontario)
  • Nature of Activity

    • Water Management
  • Assessment Status

  • Start Date

  • Proponent

    Hiawatha First Nation
  • Authorities

    • Infrastructure Canada
  • Assessment Type

    Project on federal lands
  • Reference Number


This map is for illustrative purposes. The markers represent the approximate locations based on available data. More than one marker may be identified for a given assessment.

Nearby assessments

...within 200 kilometres
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