Belfast’s sewer network which dates back to the Victorian era was suffering as a result of sustained underinvestment coupled with inadequate capacity as a result of the city’s continued expansion.
To address the problem, Northern Ireland Water (NIW) undertook a major Stormwater Management project called The Belfast Sewers Project. The £120 million project aims to improve water quality in both the River Lagan and Blackstaff River while reducing the risk of flooding within the inner city. It also incorporates the rehabilitation and upgrading of the sewer network to ensure compliance with European Union environmental standards.
The project has already won a Considerate Constructor’s Award based on a number of factors such as standards of site management, safety and environmental awareness.
Scheduled for completion in early 2010, Belfast Sewers Project will benefit residents and businesses through:
- enhanced water quality in the River Lagan
- reduced risk of flooding
- reduced traffic disruptions that result from emergency road repairs
- providing a healthy environment
- providing capacity to meet increased tourism
- providing an efficient infrastructure for future economic development in Greater Belfast
Funding for the programme of works was secured through the Reinvestment and Reform Initiative (RRI), established by the Northern Ireland Assembly and HM Treasury in May 2002 to resource infrastructure upgrades. The Belfast Sewers Project is one of over 300 Northern Ireland Water development programmes which represent a total investment of £590 million