Work to start on water treatment upgrade

In response to last year’s cryptosporidium outbreak in Queenstown, a permanent upgrade is planned for the water treatment facility.

Cryptosporidium, also called "crypto", is a parasite which when ingested has gastro-like symptoms in humans such as diarrhoea and vomiting.

As a result of the outbreak, a temporary UV water treatment solution was installed at the Two Mile water-intake facility, which supplies water to Queenstown, Fernhill and Sunshine Bay.

On Monday, work will start on a permanent upgrade to the Two Mile water intake facility, involving the installation of a larger UV water treatment plant.

Queenstown Lakes District Council general manager properly and infrastructure Tony Avery said the work was expected to take six months to complete, and the new infrastructure would replace the temporary solution at Fernhill Reservoir.

Mr Avery said once the upgrade was complete, "we will be able to redeploy the temporary solution for the Two Mile water intake, elsewhere in the district".

Due to the work site’s proximity to the Sunshine Bay Trail, a popular walkway for locals and tourists, Mr Avery said the district council had worked with Queenstown Trails Trust to create a short detour for pedestrians around the site.

A district council spokesperson said the upgrade was estimated to cost $5million.

Mr Avery noted noise, vibration and machinery movements could cause disruption to nearby residents while crews worked to construct the new UV water treatment plant, but disruption would be minimised as much as possible.