€28m investment in next phase of Dublin Region Watermains Rehabilitation Project
Irish Water, Ireland’s national water utility responsible for providing and developing water and wastewater services throughout Ireland, has begun scoping and design work on the next phase of a major water conservation project for Dublin. €28m will be invested in the next phase of the Dublin Region Watermains Rehabilitation project which will replace 73km of old water pipes and save 1.6 million litres of water currently lost through leakage in the region each day. Active leak management measures, water leakage reduction, pressure control and water quality improvements will also be implemented.
Burst pipes, water supply disruptions and poor water pressure, are ongoing problems for Dublin’s water supply. Many of the existing watermains in Dublin are cast iron pipes installed up to 100 years ago. Of the approximately 9,200kms of pipe in the Dublin Region, nearly 800kms were installed pre-1930 and almost 1,000kms were installed pre-1940. This project will replace the oldest and the most ineffective watermains in Dublin with new heavy duty polyethylene pipes. Previous regional water conservation initiatives completed in the Dublin region have already contributed substantially to continuing economic growth by saving of 11 million litres of water each day.
Site investigation work will begin this autumn and construction work will begin in mid 2016. Sections of watermains in the poorest condition will be replaced first with the project expected to be completed in early 2019. Commuters and the public will be notified in advance of planned work and the project will be progressed in stages, to minimise the impact on commuters, residents, visitors and businesses in the City and wider Dublin region.
The Dublin Watermains Rehabilitation Project is part of Irish Water’s ongoing investment in national water infrastructure to address the serious deficiencies in our water supply and treatment network. Jerry Grant, Head of Asset Management with Irish Water said; “One third of Dublin’s treated drinking water in the Dublin region is lost through leaks, a situation that is both environmentally and economically unsustainable. Currently in Dublin, water supply is operating with spare capacity of around 10%. There is also significant new demand to be met as the economy recovers and so conserving the region’s precious water resources is essential.”
“Conserving water through mains rehabilitation work while working on the longer term strategy to deliver a new water supply source for Dublin is essential and this project is being prioritised to achieve this. A reliable and safe drinking water supply will support future social and economic development and this water conservation initiative underpins Irish Water’s policy to develop an effective asset management approach to managing our water network,” Jerry Grant said.
Irish Water invested €340m in improving water and waste water services in 2014 and will invest over €410 million in improving water services during 2015. This spend will increase in the coming years. Capital investment of approximately €600m per year is required for a sustained period of several decades, in order to address the acknowledged deficiencies in the country’s water infrastructure.