09/24/2012 18:56 EDT | Updated 11/24/2012 05:12 EST

McTavish reservoir work will jam roads around Royal Vic

Traffic in the area between the Royal Victoria Hospital and McGill University's main campus could get congested for months starting next week as major work begins on the McTavish reservoir.

Municipal crews will be tearing up the area to work on the aqueducts and sewers linked to the reservoir, which supplies drinking water for 500,000 people.

The work will happen in three phases and will affect Pine Avenue, McTavish Street and Doctor Penfield Avenue.

While it looks a lot like work that was done in the same area last year, the city said this work goes well beyond what was carried out in 2011.

"We secured the area, and now we're going into the heart of the work that we have to do," said Richard Deschamps, vice-president of city council’s executive committee.

The $16-million project's three phases will roll out over the next 10 months:

- Phase 1: From October to December, one block of Pine Avenue will be closed, and McTavish Street and Doctor Penfield Avenue will become two-way roads.

- Phase 2: From December to March, the top of Dr. Penfield will be shut down. McTavish and Pine will have two-way traffic.

- Phase 3: From April until next August, the eastbound part of Pine will be closed for three blocks.