Upgraded water over a year away

Alexandra residents can circle Christmas 2022 on their calendars as the expected date to turn their taps on to an improved quality of water supply.

This comes almost five years after the Central Otago District Council first agreed to construction and treatment options and a pipeline route in 2017.

The council announced in a release on Friday it had awarded a contract for supply and installation of the membrane plant for the Lake Dunstan water supply treatment to Pall Marshall Water Consortium for $3.7million.

Due to international supply and shipping issues, the membranes were expected to take nine months to arrive from the manufacturer Pall in Germany, five months to install and six weeks to commission.

Based on this timeline, the go-live date for the Lake Dunstan water supply project was expected to be December 2022.

Negotiations were under way with other key suppliers and contractors to enable construction to start on the remaining project components.

Central Otago Mayor Tim Cadogan said there was "no doubt" Alexandra residents had been waiting a long time for higher-quality water.

"Many are disappointed that the pipes to supply that water from the Clyde bore head have been in the ground for so long with no water flowing through them.”

The project was consulted on in the 2018 long-term plan and installation of the pipeline to carry the water from the bore site at Clyde to the treatment plant in Alexandra at the Northern Reservoir began in May 2019 and was completed in July 2020. Construction of the new treatment plant was originally scheduled to be completed by mid-2020, but was delayed by both the discovery of Lindavia algae in Lake Dunstan and need for further consideration for the project’s filtration system, as well as Covid-19 setbacks.

The revised date of autumn 2022 completion has now been further extended due to international supply and shipping issues related to the continued impact of Covid-19.

Mr Cadogan said the discovery of Lindavia in the lake, and the need to undertake trials to ensure filtration met drinking water standards added more than a year to the project.

"Lindavia would not only have blocked the filtration system proposed before the trials but would also have blocked people’s home irrigation systems, so this was a good problem to find out about early,” Mr Cadogan said.

“This discovery, combined with delays caused by Covid lockdowns and related supply issues, means the project is well behind schedule but council remains committed to completing the project."

Comments

This sad story and the pathetic excuses of the COCD illustrates perfectly why our water systems need to be managed by the Government. Apart from puffing up their own self importance these so called Public Servants waste our rates are incompetent and need to be removed from office at the first opportunity.

Our journalists are your neighbours

We are the South's eyes and ears in crucial council meetings, at court hearings, on the sidelines of sporting events and on the frontline of breaking news.

As our region faces uncharted waters in the wake of a global pandemic, Otago Daily Times continues to bring you local stories that matter.

We employ local journalists and photographers to tell your stories, as other outlets cut local coverage in favour of stories told out of Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.

You can help us continue to bring you local news you can trust by becoming a supporter.

Become a Supporter