The first stage of a multi million dollar wastewater project for Mahurangi has been given the go-ahead.
Watercare plans to pipe Warkworth sewage to a new hi-tech plant in Snells Beach, where it will be treated and pumped to the existing outflow at Martins Bay.
Construction is expected to start this year and be completed over five years. It will be expanded over 35 years as the population grows, with the total project expected to cost $135 million.
Discharge of treated wastewater into the Mahurangi Harbour will end and the Warkworth plant will be decommissioned once the new infrastructure is in place.
The current treatment plants at Snells and Warkworth cater for 8400, which is expected to increase to 11,300 by 2021 and 30,000 by 2051. Both wastewater plants are operating under expired resource consents.
On March 22, consent was granted for the new pump stations between Warkworth and Snells Beach, short-term discharge from Warkworth, short and long term discharge from the Snells/Algies wastewater treatment plant, and the new ocean discharge outfall at Martins Bay.
The decision was made by Auckland Council independent hearing commissioners.
Submitter Greg Stevenson presented evidence questioning the rationale of only considering centralised systems and not distributed systems. Watercare last year spent $1.8 million investigating wastewater solutions for the area.