WYG to help improve water quality in east Belfast

6 Apr 2011

Solutions provider WYG Ireland has signed a contract with Northern Ireland Water to help improve water quality for residents of east Belfast.

The consultancy firm which is based in Leeds will be designing, managing and co-ordinating construction design management on a new stg£750k project to reduce out-of-sewer spills to water courses. This project forms part of a larger eight year framework.

WYG has been managing Northern Ireland Water’s Integrated Wastewater Framework for seven years. The framework is aimed to reduce the risk of flooding and improve water quality for the eastern area of Northern Ireland.

“Since the project is located centrally in the Connswater Greenway scheme, the design and construction work will be undertaken considerately to its surroundings,” said Ernie Spence, an associate at WYG.

“The Greenway will create a 9km linear park through east Belfast, following the course of the Connswater, Knock and Loop Rivers, which makes the location environmentally sensitive.

“Throughout the project we will be focused on alleviating disturbance to the surroundings, working in a sustainable manner through the design and construction phases. Our design involves converting concepts developed using hydraulic modelling into buildable solutions, whilst minimising environmental impact and providing value for money.”

Northern Ireland has a long history of underinvestment in water and sewerage systems, which has caused significant inequality in comparison to the rest of the UK’s water industry, in particular in the areas of out of sewer flooding and water mains leakage.

Northern Ireland is however changing the ways of its past and moving forward to provide better water management. Last year, £778m was invested in water and wastewater infrastructure, and £174m in water treatment and storage facilities and mains improvement. Northern Ireland also invested £614m in wastewater collection and treatment systems.

Grahame Millar from Northern Ireland Water said, “With the experience WYG holds within the wastewater arena, it gives us the assurance that the work will be done sustainably whilst satisfying our budgetary and programme constraints.”

He said there are approximately 795,000 domestic, agricultural, commercial and business properties in Northern Ireland connected to the public water supply and 660,000 connected to the public sewerage system. Millar believes the increased investment in its systems and services will produce major benefits to public health, the environment and the economy.

WYG will be replacing a combined sewer overflow chamber, associated pipework and outfall structures. The project is expected to be completed in December this year.