New water pipes by 2017

2015-05-20 06:00

IT may take two years, but it will be worth the wait.

That’s the view of chairperson of the Howick Ratepayers’ Association, reacting to news that uMgungundlovu Municipality has budgeted more than R250 million to replace ageing water pipes in Hilton and Merrivale.

Problems with the ailing infrastructure have resulted in continuous water shortages.

In light of the ongoing problems over more than three decades, the ­uMgungundlovu Municipality has set aside R169 million to replace ruptured ­asbestos cement (AC) piping in Hilton and R80 million for the Merrivale and Merrivale Heights areas.

The asbestos pipes will be replaced with unplasticised polyvinyl chloride (uPVC) piping.

At a recent function, headed by district mayor Yusuf Bhamjee, the municipality launched the two-year Hilton, Merrivale and Merrivale Heights AC Pipe Replacement Project, which will replace 93kms of AC pipeline in Hilton and 29kms in Merrivale.

The main objective of the replacement programme is to reduce the current high level of shortages, primarily due to burst pipes, leakage from pipe joints, old valves and faulty meters as well as to rationalise and relocate the reticulation within public spaces.

The project, which has a two-year deadline, will roll over to other affected areas after it is complete.

“This labour-intensive project will immensely contribute to fewer water interruptions in the lives of our residents and will positively improve our revenue,” Bhamjee said.

Head of the municipality’s technical department Bheki Mbambo said as the project progresses, nobody should be left without water for more than a day, and if there are problems, the municipality will take steps to notify residents and supply water through tankers.

In addition to replacing the main piping, a new 100 kilolitre elevated tank and a pump house will be installed in the Groenkloof reservoir site.

The water infrastructure currently in place loses more than 57% of its water per day, leaving residents’ taps dry.

Hilton resident Steve Matten said his home in Dennis Shepstone Road has had dribbles of water­ for the past three weeks.

“We are extremely frustrated with this. It’s either the pressure is too low, or it’s too high. Some of my neighbours have ­resorted to catching rain water,” Matten said.

Chairperson of the Howick Ratepayers’ Association Mano Naidoo said the job creation of the project is also a key issue.

The project will employ Hilton and Merrivale locals to do the manual ­labour, creating temporary employment.

“This will be two years of an uphill struggle, but there are long-term benefits.

This is long overdue,” Naidoo said

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Financial advisors – Do you need one and should you get one?

The good, the bad, and everything else you need to know when considering hiring a financial advisor.


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.