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Oxidation pond project will deliver benefits

“Oxidation pond project will deliver regional benefits”

May 11, 2001

When half of the Mangere Wastewater Treatment Plant’s oxidation ponds disappear next week it will be a significant milestone in a project with great benefits for the immediate environment and the wider Auckland region.

On Thursday 17 May Watercare Services will breach the Pond 1 sea wall allowing the sea to flow in and effectively returning more than 200 hectares of the Manukau Harbour to natural tidal flow for the first time on 40 years.

It is all part of Watercare Services Ltd’s $451 million Project Manukau which ARC Environmental Management Committee chairperson Patricia Thorp says is very significant for the region.

“Not only will the project result in a major upgrade of the treatment plant itself and its associated environmental benefits but it also includes a Coastal and Foreshore Restoration plan for the surrounding area,” Cr Thorp says.

“The plan features a coastal walkway, with special provision for bird roosts, which will link the historic Otuataua Stonefields with Ambury Regional Park and give the public ease of access to the coast in between.”

Cr Thorp says the ARC has granted a series of resource consents for the project and these will ensure that the restoration is natural looking, where possible, and sustainable.

“As well as Watercare and the ARC, Manukau City Council, local residents and the people of nearby Makaurau Marae have also played important roles in making this a successful project so far,” Cr Thorp says.

A section of the Pond 1 wall is expected to be removed on Thursday to allow the sea to flow in. The remaining pond water is treated to exacting standards but as a precaution Watercare is advising the public not to swim in or take shellfish from the Manukau Harbour between blockhouse Bay, Mangere Bridge and Ihumatao until June 7.

The scheduled completion date for the treatment plant upgrade (which will see it become a 100 per cent land based operation) is October 2003 while the coastal and foreshore restoration is due for completion by October 2006.

For further information please call:

Cr Patricia Thorp
Chairperson, ARC Environmental Management Committee
Phone 366-2000 ext 7047
Mobile 025 623 9782


Simon Roche
ARC Communications
Phone 366-2000 ext 8100
Mobile 021 656 380

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