Irish Water, Ireland’s national water utility responsible for providing and developing water and wastewater services throughout Ireland, in partnership with Kilkenny County Council, will invest over €21 million to upgrade the water and wastewater infrastructure in Kilkenny.
This level of investment is essential to ensure that people and businesses in Kilkenny can continue to enjoy a safe and secure drinking water supply and a wastewater infrastructure and network that protect the area’s natural environment and meet all discharge licensing standards. It is also essential that the infrastructure has capacity to meet current and future needs to support the region’s ongoing development.
Safe and Secure Drinking Water Supply
Approximately €5 million will be invested in upgrading the Kilkenny Regional Water Supply Scheme, which serves a population in excess of 27,000 people, including the associated businesses. This project will upgrade the water treatment facilities at Troyswood Water Treatment Plant and improve network interconnectivity to the Radestown supply area, providing security of supply to the city and environs.
Further investment in the Kilkenny Regional Water Supply Scheme is progressing with the planned construction of Outrath Reservoir, which has an estimated project cost of €1 million. This will address the lack of storage at the southern extremity of the Kilkenny Regional Supply Scheme. The tendering of this project is due to commence shortly.
Design works are concluding on the upgrading of the Inistioge Water Supply Scheme which serves over 4,000 people and businesses in Inistioge, Thomastown and the surrounding area. It is anticipated that €5 million will be invested in this project, which will supplement the water supply sources at Thomastown and provide 17km of new watermain, reservoirs and a pumping station. Once completed the new scheme will address the current water quality and supply issues.
A further €0.2 million will be invested in upgrading the Clonassy Water Treatment Plant on the Mooncoin Regional Water Supply Scheme which supplies over 9,000 customers in South Kilkenny. Works are progressing and are expected to be completed by July 2015.
Phase 1 of the Kilkenny Watermains Rehabilitation Contract was completed in 2014 and included a total investment of €1.83 million. The project involved the replacement of 10km of watermains at various locations throughout the county.
Over €3 million will also be invested in the replacement of watermains which will deliver significant improvements for customers in terms of water quality and supply. This will include an investment of €2 million in Phase 2B of the Kilkenny Watermains Rehabilitation Contract involving 8.9km of watermains at Newrath, Graiguenemanagh, Kilkenny City (Leggettsrath Cottages), Piltown (Belline) and Knocktopher (Cherrymount to Knocktopher). A further €1.2 million approximately will also be invested in the replacement of over 6.5km of watermains which will benefit customers in Goresbridge, Owning, Ballygriffin, Curraghmartin, Norelands and Stoneyford.
Upgraded Wastewater Infrastructure to Protect Local Environment
Irish Water and Kilkenny County Council are also progressing a number of wastewater infrastructure projects representing a significant investment of over €7 million.
Approximately €3.3 million is being invested to upgrade the wastewater treatment plants in Castlecomer, Urlingford and Stoneyford. Treatment of wastewater at existing plants serving these areas does not currently meet required environmental standards resulting in inadequately treated wastewater being discharged into the receiving waters. This is particularly important in Castlecomer and Stoneyford where the treated wastewater is discharged into the River Barrow and River Nore SAC (Special Area of Conservation).
The project which is expected to take 12 months to complete, will serve 1,300 existing households and businesses in these towns and the increased treatment capacity at each plant will allow for future development.
A new pumping station at the River Dinin Crossing in Castlecomer will also reduce storm water flow to these treatment plants and improve their overall operational efficiency.
Over €3 million is also being invested in new wastewater treatment plants in Freshford, Johnstown and Goresbridge.
The Freshford Wastewater Treatment Plant, which is located on a green field site approximately 600m from the village, will be operational in June 2015. The new plant has capacity to serve 1,100 P.E. (population equivalent) ensuring current and future residential and business development in the area can be met.
New treatment plants in Johnstown and Goresbridge are currently under construction at the existing sites of the old plants and will have capacity to serve 800 and 600 P.E. respectively. Johnstown is expected to be completed in August 2015 and Goresbridge in September 2015.
Treatment standards at the new plants will meet the Waste Water Discharge Licence requirements issued by the EPA and improve the water quality of the receiving waters.
Aisling Buckley, Regional Information Officer, Southern Region, Irish Water said; “We are delighted to have works underway or in scope to bring much needed improvements to the water and wastewater infrastructure serving the businesses and communities of Kilkenny. Addressing the serious deficiencies that exist across the network is essential so that families and businesses receive a water service that supports their current and future needs.”
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 over subsequent 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.