Local Government Magazine

Napier’s Biological Trickling Filter Wastewater Plan Highly Commended

At the 2015 LGNZ EXCELLENCE Awards.

EQC EXCELLENCE Award for Infrastructure Project of the Year.

Highly Commended: Napier City Council – Biological Trickling Filter Wastewater Plan

Napier City Council’s biological wastewater plant was the council’s biggest ever infrastructure project. Entirely managed by an in-house team, the scheme was delivered on time, to a high quality and below the estimated budget.

Launched in response to public concern about the quality of effluent being discharged into the Hawke’s Bay, the new plant is a modern facility using biological processes to treat wastewater.

Awards judges praised the scheme as future-proofed, well-researched, using best practice and making a strong contribution to public health outcomes.

It has a low environmental impact and comparatively low operating costs. It features concrete tanks with plastic surfaces that bacteria grow on and provide secondary treatment for wastewater as it trickles past.

It also includes non-separated industrial and domestic wastewater for efficient treatment solutions, grit removal to reduce wear and improve outflow quality, and a Rakahore channel – an open, rock-lined channel which exposes treated wastewater to the open air before discharging it to the ocean environment – to meet Māori cultural requirements.

The project was managed by a dedicated project manager employed by the council. She was supported by a core team of council engineers who were also able to call on the council’s own design, computer-aided drafting, contract and administration support, finance and service staff.

The project team was responsible for the final design, tendering and procurement phases through to supervising construction and preparing draft operating and maintenance manuals.

The cost of $21.62 million was well below the estimated $26.24 million budget. Future demand has also been taken into account in the design and construction phase.

This article was first published in the August 2015 issue of NZ Local Government Magazine.

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