When the Cheakamus Crossing neighbourhood was built for the 2010 Winter Games as the Whistler Athletes Village, a heat pump utilzing the Cheakamus Crossing District Energy System (DES) was incorporated into buildings and homes. 
The Resort Municipality of Whistler (RMOW) operates and maintains the DES that is located at the Whistler Wastewater Treatment Plant, as well as piping in public areas. Strata properties are responsible for the piping on common property, and individual homeowners are responsible for all home heating equipment within their homes. 
The DES substantially decreases the electrical and natural gas consumption in the community.
Today, 90 per cent of the homes in the neighbourhood are restricted to the Whistler workforce through the Whistler Housing Authority

Home District Energy System Repair and Maintenance Program

Phase 1: One-time inspection and repair

WDC will organize and directly pay the approved qualified technician for the following work to be done:

  1. Inspect flow valve and replace 6 gallon per minute cartridge with 8 gallon per minute cartridge.
  2. Install time delay to prevent heat pump from starting until district energy system (DES) flow valve is fully open.
  3. Install air relief vents on all fan coils.
  4. Inspect and, if required, correct sensor installation and location on both the heating buffer tank and the domestic hot water storage tank.
  5. Confirm that backup heat for both heating buffer tank and domestic hot water tank operates automatically.
  6. Confirm location of Schrader valves on expansion tanks. Raise tank installation if required to allow access to valve.
  7. Adjust heat pump set-points to manufacturer’s recommended settings for both heating and domestic hot water.
  8. Take water sample from heating distribution system for testing.
  9. Flush heating distribution systems 
  10. Replace backflow prevention device with one that does not require annual testing.

Phase 2: Repairs and Replacements 

For each individual unit, WDC will reimburse up to 50% of eligible costs for additional home DES repairs and replacements up to a maximum of $1000:

  • DES system repair work is engaged directly between Homeowner and a Qualified Technician

**Please note the following changes**

  • Owners may select to engage a qualified technician of their choice, and are no longer restricted to using the Phase 1 Program Authorized Technicians. 
  • Participating owners may submit multiple claims towards the reimbursement value noted above. 
  • The deadline for claim submission is May 1, 2018. 


How to Obtain Your Rebate

To receive the above rebate, email WDC a copy of the receipt for Phase 2 work completed showing payment was made for the full amount to please allow 4-6 weeks for processing.


Our Program Authorized Technicians

Here is a list of the Companies who we have engaged for this program:

Allied Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning Ltd. - Barry Wajzer is at 604-307-3100

Energy 1 Services Ltd. - Yvonne is at 1-844-488-3700  ext 104

Haakon HVAC Services  - Maria or Sarah are in the office at 604-932-3088. Please mention that you are with this program, so they connect you to the right technician. 


On-going maintenance

WDC has asked for bulk-pricing for the recommended annual maintenance program from the approved qualified technicians. We were not able to recieve consistent feedback from our application process, so we encourage you to take this up with your Stratas in the year to come. 

Stratas can contact WDC to request further information about bulk pricing options. 

All costs for the ongoing maintenance program will be the responsibility of the property owners.


System Flush Procedure

Please note, as there have been some previous questions about the proper procedure for flushing the home DES units, the approved qualified technicians have been given direction to use the following procedure:

  • Includes cleaning and then flushing with water until clear and blowing down buffer tank to remove sediment
  • Clean and flush through the heat pump and buffer tank first; then flush the heating zones by manifold
  • Cleaning and flushing to be done on a per zone per manifold basis to ensure maximum flow velocity through each heating zone and individual fan coil circuits (where available) and then finish with the domestic hot water section of the heating system
  • Vent air from each fan coil loop at beginning of flushing that fan coil
  • Isolate each individual heating loop after flushing to prevent dirty water from contaminating already cleaned sections


About the Cheakamus Crossing neighbourhood District Energy System

The District Energy System (DES) uses heat-treated wastewater from Whistler's Waste Water Treatment Plant to provide space and water heat. 

The DES substaintially decreases the electrical and natural gas requirements of residences. It is estimated the DES reduces greenhouse gas emissions by up to 95 per cent annually when conpared to conventional technology. This is the equivalent of taking 350 gasoline-powered passenger vehicles off the road each year. 


Fees and Charges

The Resort Municipality of Whistler (RMOW)  collects annual user fees for the District Energy System on a quarteryly basis. Residents of the Cheakamus Crossing neighbourhood can expect to recieve bills after the end of each quarter on April 1, July 1, September 1 and December 31. 

User fees are collected in accordance with the Cheakamus Crossing District Energy System Fee Bylaw. 


Review of home district energy systems

Whistler Development Corp. (WDC), the developer of teh Cheakamus Crossing neighbourhood, and the RMOW have montitored and reviewed concerns with home district energy systems. 

  • In early 2016, the RMOW compiled and delivered a Homeowner Quick Reference Guide and a Technical Service Guide  to help homeowners maintain their home district energy systems. 
  • In spring 2016, working with the neighbourhood through the Cheakamus Crossing District Energy System Volunteer Committee, WDC retained an independent expert, Integral Group, to review the operations of 20 home owner's heating systems and better understand their experience, which have been published in a Forensic Audit Report.  
  • While the report found no systematic failure within the system, it did identify some deficiencies in individual home heating units and a platform for further review.
  • In September 2016, nine units were closely inspected using a list of specific items that were identified in the earlier forensic report. 
  • This data was used to estimate the cost to make certain repairs, where required, in the WDC constructed homes noted above. 


Additional resources


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2016-10-28-WDC-DES-update.pdf150.03 KB
2016-11-22-WDC-DES-update.pdf236.75 KB
2016-12-06-WDC-DES-update.pdf201.1 KB
2017-02-20-WDC-DES-update.pdf191.78 KB
2017-03-14-Domestic-Hot-Water-Tank-Replacement-Update.pdf263.89 KB
2017-03-22-WDC-DES-update.pdf195.03 KB
2017-12-05-WDC-DES-update.pdf199.5 KB