Work has begun on the first of four preliminary jobs connected to the Tar Ponds and Coke Ovens cleanup. Crews from Coastal Construction of North Sydney are relocating the water main serving Whitney Pier. The water main currently runs through a contaminated section of the Coke Ovens property just east of the Victoria Road overpass. It will be moved to an uncontaminated section of the former Sydney Steel Plant, now known as Harbourside Business Park, just west of the overpass. “Moving this important part of our water supply system to a safer location is but one of many benefits that will accrue to Cape Breton Regional Municipality as the Tar Ponds and Coke Ovens cleanup gets underway,” said councillor Vince Hall, who chairs the municipality’s Tar Ponds and Coke Ovens committee. “This is the first of several construction projects Sydney residents will notice over the next year as we gear up for the big cleanup of the Tar Ponds and Coke Ovens,” said Richard Morykot, project engineer with the Sydney Tar Ponds Agency. Coastal Construction won the $614,000 contract in a competitive tender was issued by the Cape Breton Regional Municipality, which operates the municipal water system. The Sydney office of the engineering company ADI Ltd., which designed the realignment of the water main, will supervise the construction. The federal-provincial cost share agreement for the Tar Ponds cleanup will pay for the water main relocation. The project will take nine weeks to complete, and employ up to 10 workers. A second preliminary project, the $6.3-million relocation of Coke Ovens Brook to an uncontaminated channel, will get underway later this month. Engineering work on the other two preliminary projects, building a coffer dam at Battery Point and cleaning up the cooling pond behind the former Sysco general office building, is nearing completion.