Aqueduct back on track

2011-07-04 00:00

PHASE Two of the Western Aqueduct (WA) project has finally been given the go-ahead with the tender being officially awarded to EsorFranki and Cycad Pipelines Joint Venture.

The start of the contract was delayed by a year after three unsuccessful bidders lodged objections against the ethekwini Municipality awarding the contract to EsorFranki and Cycad Pipelines in June 2010.

The R864 million construction contract was signed in Durban last week and eThekwini Municipality’s project manager for the WA project, Andrew Copley, welcomed an end to the delay.

The project is of major strategic ­socio-economic significance to the Durban region.

The WA is the single largest bulk water supply pipeline contract ever undertaken by eThekwini Water and Sanitation (EWS), and its implementation will improve water supply to the western and northern regions of the metro.

Excess pressure in the pipeline is planned to be converted into hydropower at two sites along the route of the pipeline — one at Hillcrest and the other at Wyebank — allowing the municipality to use this “green energy” to supply the electricity requirements of these suburbs.

Phase One is being commissioned.

Copley says the full benefit of the pipelines will be realised only when the 55 km phase two is commissioned.

The construction work on phase two is expected to begin this month at two sites — Inchanga and Ntuzuma — and will take at least two-and-a-half years to complete.

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