Deer Run Sanitary Lift Station Upgrade

Project Overview

The Deer Run Sanitary Lift Station was built in 1976 and designed to meet the standards at that time. Since then, safety and operational requirements for lift stations have changed, and significant infrastructure upgrades are required to reflect the current standards outlined by the Lift Station Design Guidelines and The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) .

Most electrical equipment is now required to be physically separated from potential explosive gasses in the wet well. The existing back-up generator is undersized and does not meet the lift station’s current electrical needs. A new, appropriately sized generator will be installed to ensure sufficient backup power during utility outages.

A second building is required to house the larger back-up generator and electrical systems to keep them separated from the wet-well located in the existing building. A summary of upgrades includes:

  • Upgrades to Electrical Instrumentation and Controls (EIC) Components (ie: electrical segregation, gas detection, pump controls).
  • New, appropriately sized back-up generator.
  • Minor mechanical systems upgrades (ie: HVAC, plumbing).
  • Structural and safety works (ie: wet well platforms, fall protections, insulation, safety equipment).
  • New roofing and building envelope.
  • Upgraded exterior façade.
  • Improved LED lighting.
  • New odour control unit.
  • Upgraded perimeter fencing.
  • Improved access for maintenance and worker vehicles.
  • Landscaping to include native plants and grasses.

These upgrades will ensure the lift station continues to provide a high level of sanitary service to Calgarians for another ~30 years, while ensuring the safety for those workers operating and maintaining the facility.

Project Timeline:

Fall 2021 - Public Engagement
Feedback was sought on exterior aesthetic options from the public.

Winter 2021 – Public Engagement Report Completed
View What We Heard Report here.

Fall/Winter 2022 - Preparatory Works Begin
Utilities and transformer relocation (ENMAX)

Spring 2023 - Construction Expected to Begin
Contract award is expected to occur in the first quarter of 2023. Construction may begin as early as April 2023 and will take approximately 16-18 months to complete. Timelines may fluctuate due to inclement weather, underground conditions and/or other unexpected circumstances.

Project Updates

This webpage will be updated as milestones are met. Please check back periodically. 


For more information or questions, please contact 311.   

Existing structure



Existing structure


The new lift station will be constructed directly south of the existing building. They will be physically separated but will match and appear as one coordinated structure.

In 2021, citizens had the opportunity to provide feedback on exterior materials and finishes of the new building. The design has now been finalized.

The façade will be constructed using Thermowood – a sustainable heat-treated timber with a life expectancy of more than 60 years – in an earth tone that aims to blend in with the surrounding area. Once construction is completed, plants and native grasses will be planted in the area surrounding the lift station. 

Please note the renderings shown below are for illustrative purposes only. Final construction, including exact colours, placement of doors/vents/exhausts, and materials may vary or change slightly.

In 2021, the public was invited to provide feedback and preferences on the exterior finishes for the new lift station. Common themes found were:

  • To have the buildings blend in and look similar to existing homes in the area.
  • No contemporary components.
  • To add more landscaping.
  • Preference to use natural materials and colours.
  • To move the location of the new building closer to the existing building.

As a result of feedback received, the following was adjusted as part of the final design:

  • The exterior aesthetic was muted in colour, made more earthy-toned, and most architectural elements were removed in effort to blend in with the surrounding landscape.
  • The physical location of the second building was moved to sit just south of the existing building. This change in location moves it slightly farther away from the pathway system and reduces the visual impact of the second building.

Frequently Asked Questions

Will this project impact Fish Creek Provincial Park?

No, the lift station is located outside of the boundaries of Fish Creek Provincial Park. The lift station and subsequent construction work will all take place on City-owned lands.

Will trees be removed?

No trees are expected to be removed as part of this project. The grassed area around the existing building provides sufficient space for both the new building and the construction lay down area.

Will there be odours from the lift station?

The odour control unit will be replaced with a new unit to ensure there is a functioning system for the service life of the lift station. During construction, there may be periods of heightened odour as the system is switched out. 

Will this site be open to the public?

No, lift stations are not accessible to the public. 

Will there be public washrooms available?

No, there are no public washrooms at this lift station; however, washrooms are available within Fish Creek Provincial Park.

What is the estimated cost for this project?

Contract award is expected in early 2023. Due the legislated competitive procurement process, we are unable to disclose the project budget at this time.

To learn more about how The City procures products and services, you can click here.

Why is The City completing new exterior (architectural) treatments?

Upgrading the exterior façade to a durable Thermowood is necessary to protect the building upgrades from damage, such as wind, rain, and animal damage for example, and will serve to prolong the facilities lifespan with less maintenance. Given this lift station is located next to Fish Creek Provincial Park and residential homes, The City placed emphasis on attractive exterior materials that would complement the aesthetic appeal of the area.

What to Expect During Construction

The construction work hours for this project are expected to follow the Community Standards Bylaw for noise restrictions which are:

Monday – Saturday: 7:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.
Sundays & Holidays: 9:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.

Impacts as a result of construction are anticipated to be minimal; however, nearby residents and park users can expect to see: 

  • Truck and heavy equipment traffic accessing the construction site and surrounding area.
  • Construction crews and site workers.
  • An increase in noise from equipment and work crews.
  • Periods of heightened odour as the odour control unit is replaced.
  • Short-term closures and/or detours to the nearby pathway system.
  • Potential construction activity on weekends and holidays.

We know that construction impacts can be disruptive, and the project team will work to minimize disruptions where possible, adhere to all bylaws, and most importantly, ensure safety for all.

Lift Station Basics

Calgary’s wastewater system is a gravity fed system, meaning sanitary flows and wastewater are mostly driven by gravity to our water treatment facilities. 

When water runs down a sink, drain or toilet, it becomes wastewater. Via gravity, the wastewater travels to one of three wastewater treatment plants. When gravity isn’t an option due to elevation in the area, sanitary flows are directed to one of hundreds of lift stations located throughout The City.

A lift station is a pump that pumps the wastewater up to a higher elevation, so gravity can continue to work and move the water towards the nearest treatment facility. Despite being next door to the Fish Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant, parts of Deer Run are too low in elevation to drain to the treatment plant via gravity without the help of a lift station.

How it Works – Lift Stations

Watch this video to learn more about how lift stations operate and function.