A tank called FRED

Watercare’s new $30 million Fred Thomas Drive Storage Tank and Pump Station in Takapuna helps prevent wastewater overflows into Shoal Bay.

Around 30 Fulton Hogan contractors and Watercare staff watched as a ribbon was officially cut and then an automatic door raised up, revealing the inside of the new pump house, which transports wastewater to the Wairau Road Pump Station and then onto the Rosedale Wastewater Treatment Plant.

The newly-laid asphalt surrounding the pump house building gives no hint at what lay beneath — a massive 10-metre-deep concrete dry well sitting alongside a similar concrete wet well.

Construction of the 4.5 million litre tank began in March 2016. The pump station and tank have been working very effectively since they began operation in January. Usually, there are about six wet-weather overflows into Shoal Bay per year during heavy rain events.

Watercare is investing over $1 billion in new and improved wastewater infrastructure to cater for the huge population growth in the Devonport Peninsula and East Takapuna areas that is expected to nearly double to around 40,000 by 2050.

The current wastewater pumping station in Barrys Point Road has a capacity to store 520,000 litres, but the new storage tanks at Fred Thomas Drive contain 3.5 million litres — which is a massive improvement. The new pump station is bigger and more effective too, pumping 530 litres of wastewater per second as compared to 325 litres per second at the old site.

While the main construction work took place in Fred Thomas Drive, a new wastewater rising main was simultaneously installed along Taharoto Road and Karaka Street.  A new wastewater pipeline in Wairau Road is due for completion at the end of July and work is about to begin on a new pump station there.

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