Watercare’s growing population plan31 August 2016
Watercare has big plans for Auckland. With rising population rates and 195,000 new homes, Watercare proposes a $4.9 billion spend on infrastructure projects to provide for its increasing network over the next 10 years.
Shortly the company will release its most recent asset management plan (AMP), which will detail how Watercare plans to keep ahead of Auckland’s increasing demand for water and wastewater services over the next 20 years.
Watercare’s chief executive Raveen Jaduram says their networks currently have “capacity to allow 45,000 new homes to connect today,” which they will increase to 195,00 over the next decade.
Statistics New Zealand estimates population growth of 700,000 over the next 30 years.
“We are building infrastructure as well as better utilising our existing assets,” says Jaduram. Almost half the $4.9 billion investment is allocated to support capacity for growth, such as a treatment plant, construction of new reservoirs, process upgrades, pump stations and pipelines.The other half will be invested in replacing and updating existing assets and improving service quality.
The Waikato Water Treatment Plant has been built specifically to support the need for future expansions and has already undergone two extensions to increase its capacity.
Increasing connectivity throughout the region will be a key strategic factor. Rather than creating a second reservoir at Pine Hill reservoir, an additional pump station and water main will be connected from the Albany Reservoir Complex, distributing higher volumes of water to Pine Hill reservoir.
“We are self-funded so almost 70 per cent of our investment will come from our customers and those who create growth,” explains Jaduram.
While the AMP is updated every year, this year its release includes supporting documents on the strategic plan for Auckland for the next 10-20 years.