Irish Water awards estuary pipeline contract
Irish Water has awarded the contract for the design and construction of the Cobh to Monkstown Estuary Crossing pipelines to O'Connor Utilities Ltd, in a project which will end the decades-long practice of discharging raw sewage into Cork Lower Harbour.
The work will form part of the €144 million Cork Lower Harbour Main Drainage Project.
To allow the wastewater from Cobh’s homes and businesses to be treated at Shanbally Wastewater Treatment Plant, two pipes will be installed under the River Lee estuary between Cobh and Monkstown as part of the Estuary Crossing contract. The pipes will be installed using a Horizontal Directional Drilling construction technique, which will deliver these works safely and with the minimum disruption to residents, businesses and road users and with the least environmental impact.
With 20,000 homes and businesses set to be connected to the new scheme on completion, the project is important in terms of protecting the environment, facilitating economic development and providing for a growing population.
Significant progress has already been made on the Cork Lower Harbour Main Drainage Project. The construction of the Shanbally Wastewater Treatment Plant and connection of Crosshaven, Carrigaline and Shanbally in December 2016 has already meant that the water company has halved the amount of raw sewage discharging untreated into the harbour. Ringaskiddy was connected to the treatment plant in October 2018 and the wastewater from Passage West, Glenbrook and Monkstown is set to be treated from this summer.
The Estuary Crossing contract will take approximately 1 year to complete, and once the Cobh Networks Contract is complete in 2021, all Cobh town’s wastewater will be connected to the Wastewater Treatment Plant at Shanbally by the Estuary Crossing pipeline for treatment before its safe discharge to the harbour.
“The signing of the Cobh to Monkstown Estuary Crossing contract brings us another step closer to our goal of treating the remaining 20,000 wheelie bins of raw sewage flowing into the harbour in 2021” said Déaglán Healy, Project Manager Cork Lower Harbour Main Drainage Project. “We are committed to working with the local community to minimise the impact where possible and to keep them informed about the works.”
Tim O’Connor, managing director of O’Connor Utilities Limited, added: “We are delighted to bring our extensive drilling experience back to Ireland, being a proud Cork man, and work with Irish Water and the communities of Cobh and Monkstown to deliver this important infrastructure”.
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