Water woes during wastewater upgrade

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Gore District Council contractors have discovered plenty of underground water while trying to upgrade its wastewater network in West Gore.

The work is being carried out on Waiau St.

Infrastructure general manager Ramesh Sharma said a new wastewater pipeline was being laid in trenches that were about 4m deep.

“Work on laying the pipeline to the new Ajax wastewater pump station in Charlton Lane began about two months ago,” Mr Sharma said.

The wastewater network was at least 35 years old and at capacity.

“This impacts on the ability of the area to grow, hampering demand for residential sub-division in West Gore and opportunities for industrial expansion.”

The project had been flagged in the council’s 10-year-plan.

Unfortunately the work was hampered by the high water table in the area and contractors had to dig two bores to lower it.

“[The council] has a resource consent from Environment Southland to drill up to six bores,” Mr Sharma said.

“A condition of the consent is that the water is drained via the existing stormwater network into Falconer Creek after stabilisation and controlling the dissolved oxygen level.”

Lowering the water table provided a safe and dry working environment for Wilson Contractors workers to lay the pipeline, he said.

“Between 1000cum and 2000cum is being pumped out a day.”

The groundwater came from an unconfined and unstable aquifer.

It would be very expensive to process the water for the town’s water supply.

“The council would need to upgrade the existing water treatment plant in East Gore, obtain the necessary resource consents and install a 5km pipeline connecting this area to the water treatment plant.”