Montreal rethinking shutout of PVC pipe for water mains

By Michael Lauzon
Correspondent

Published: April 12, 2013 3:15 pm ET
Updated: April 12, 2013 3:24 pm ET

Related to this story

Topics Government & Legislation, Construction, Extrusion, Pipe/Profile/Tubing

MONTREAL -- The city of Montreal is studying whether to include large-diameter PVC pipe in its main potable-water lines.

Canada's second-largest city has discouraged use of PVC pipe for potable lines with diameters exceeding 24 inches. PVC pipe producers have felt shut out of construction work because of the policy.

"We're all for open competition [against cement and steel pipe]," said Bruce Hollands, executive director of the Uni-Bell PVC Pipe Association in Dallas.

City of Montreal spokesman Philippe Sabourin said the city has preferred steel and cement water mains because they are the original pipe materials laid down decades ago in one of Canada's oldest cities. Water mains have been breaking down due to their age, causing some major flooding in the city.

"We don't want to create a mosaic of materials requiring different materials and equipment during repair and reconstruction," Sabourin said in a recent telephone interview.

However, Montreal is revisiting its stance on major pipelines in a study due to be completed late this year and may decide PVC pipe has a role in water mains.

Sabourin said Montreal has been receptive to using PVC pipe in new, secondary piping systems. In new suburbs much of the pipe is PVC. Montreal now has nearly 90 miles of PVC pipe in secondary conduits, mainly in new neighborhoods.

Montreal's attitude toward PVC pipe was recently highlighted in an April 8 article published by Canadian Broadcasting Corp. CBC reported that PVC pipe producers have complained about being shut out of bidding on Montreal's municipal contracts.

UniBell's Hollands said by telephone that the CBC article was accurate but he declined to disclose details.

The CBC article said a PVC pipe executive alleged he was approached to pay a C$150,000 (US$147,900) kickback if he wanted to bid on a municipal contract. The kickback scheme was brought to light during a municipal scandal investigation known as the Charbonneau Commission investigation.

The official cited in the CBC article, Michel Cadotte, testified that he spent more than a decade trying to get the city to buy his firm's PVC pipes for water mains and sewers. He told the commission his plans were stymied after he refused to pay the kickback.

Cadotte, a sales manager for Canadian pipe major Ipex Inc. of Verdun, Quebec, declined to comment on the CBC article or his testimony, referring questions to the Uni-Bell PVC Pipe Association.

Montreal has specified its water mains should be steel or cement. PVC pipe producers claim their products have lower failure rates and are more cost-effective than traditional materials.


Comments

Montreal rethinking shutout of PVC pipe for water mains

By Michael Lauzon
Correspondent

Published: April 12, 2013 3:15 pm ET
Updated: April 12, 2013 3:24 pm ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

Judge limits scope of jury verdict against JM Eagle

December 19, 2014 2:30 pm ET

A federal judge in Los Angeles said Dec. 18 that last year's jury verdict issued against J-M Manufacturing Co. — now JM Eagle — for...    More

Image

Soy-based foam improves window performance, sustainability

December 18, 2014 12:51 pm ET

Launched in April 2013, Madison, Wis.-based WFI Global LLC is making a name in the fenestration market with what it says is a distinct product...    More

Image

Pent-up demand fueling extrusion machinery market

December 9, 2014 1:10 pm ET

These are good times for machinery companies that serve flexible packaging — big-dollar items like blown and cast film equipment, and sheet...    More

Image

Brazilian-owned buyer to reopen Ohio films plant

December 8, 2014 4:08 pm ET

UPDATED — The 70 workers at Dow Chemical Co.’s polyolefin films plant in Findlay, Ohio, have received an early Christmas present —...    More

Image

Clear Lam adds co-packaging capabilities

December 8, 2014 2:22 pm ET

Clear Lam Packaging Inc. is investing $2 million to create a co-packing facility and innovation center at the company's Elk Grove Village, Ill., manuf...    More

Market Reports

Flexible Packaging Trends in North America

Our latest RESEARCH report examines trends in FLEXIBLE PACKAGING impacting the North American market including a review of economic conditions, key drivers of growth, materials pricing, M&A activity, sustainability challenges and the outlook for 2015.

Learn more

Plastics in Brazil - State of the Industry Report

This in-depth report examines the Brazilian plastics industry from a historical and geographical context. Our analysts provide insight on economic trends and forecasts, growing manufacturing sectors that utilize plastics, private investment opportunities, market environment challenges, and innovations in R&D.

Data tables and charts on producer prices, trade, plastics production and end market indicators is also included.

Learn more

Plastics Recycling Trends in North America

This report is a review and analysis of the North American Plastics Recycling Industry, including key trends and statistics based on 2013 performance. We examine market environment factors, regulatory issues, industry challenges, key drivers and emerging trends in post-consumer and post-industrial recycling.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

January 14, 2015 - January 14, 2015Plastics in Automotive

February 4, 2015 - February 6, 2015Plastics News Executive Forum 2015

June 2, 2015 - June 3, 2015Plastics Financial Summit - Chicago 2015

September 16, 2015 - September 18, 2015Plastics Caps & Closures - September 2015

October 27, 2015 - October 29, 2015Plastics Financial Summit - New York - 2015

More Events