Storm water

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The City's Water and Drainage Division operates and maintains current infrastructure to ensure required service levels are provided. It also oversees the planning, design and construction of the citywide drainage system.

The drainage system includes: 

  • 383 km of storm drainage pipe;
  • more than 4,815 storm service connections;
  • 7,100 utility access holes and drywells;
  • 9,548 catch basins;
  • 19 spill containment tanks;
  • several stormwater management facilities; and
  • storm pumping stations.

Extensive planning and design for Kelowna’s stormwater drainage has been occurring since 1989.

The Master Drainage Plan, nine basins and six sub-basins Management Plans, the Environmental Review for Drainage and the Urban Watershed Inventory Project have all contributed towards this framework.


Two key issues affecting the drainage system on a regular basis, pollution from stormwater runoff and hydrological changes from increased urbanization, are addressed through a variety of measures including: engineered best management practices, education, water quality monitoring, alternative treatments, watershed management and bylaw enforcement.

Monitoring programs include both the storm drainage utility network and surface water sampling. The continued monitoring of water and sediment quality helps detect water quality degradation and measure the effectiveness of measures used to address these key issues.

Residential pool and hot tub drainage

Through the  Sanitary Sewer Storm Drain Regulation Bylaw , the City restricts the discharge of residential swimming pool and hot tub water containing disinfectants such as chlorine, salt water or bromine, as the storm system connects directly into either Okanagan Lake or local streams untreated. The sanitary sewer system is directed to the City's Wastewater Treatment Facility and is treated before being released into the lake.

Residents are encouraged to drain their pools and hot tubs to a dry area on their property over a long period of time, making sure the water stays on the property. Water must not be drained onto public parkland, natural areas or adjacent properties - residents may be liable for any damages caused by the water. 

If water must be drained into the storm sewer system, the water must be dechlorinated. This includes salt water pools as they contain chlorine.  In addition residents with salt water pools should drain the water into the sanitary sewer system.

Residents should contact the City's Water Quality department before draining their pool or hot tub to make sure they are draining into the correct system. Staff may come to check the level of chlorine in the water being discharged into the storm drain or sewer. Residents must discharge at a low flow rate and cease if it starts raining.

Please note, that ponds, fountains and other water features should be drained according to the same procedure as a pool or hot tub. This is due to sediment and wastes that can be found in the water that may be hazardous to our lake and streams. 

Improper discharge of water can result in a fine of up to $2,000.

For general information please call 250-469-8887.