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Source: Auckland Council

If you are going to build a reservoir to hold 45 million litres of water, you better be a dab hand at concreting.

Howick Local Board members have toured Watercare’s Redoubt Road construction site to check progress on an infrastructure project that will help guarantee an expanding city’s water supply into the future.

The visit follows on from one earlier in the year – Howick members watch reservoir take shape.

Board chair Damian Light says the city’s growth marches on and a huge amount of planning goes on to support that.

The central baffle has slots in its base designed so that water flows in a circular motion through the storage area to prevent stagnation.

“We hear a lot about infrastructure needs, but few of us ever get the chance to get up close and experience it taking shape, so the tour was a chance to understand just how vast the project is.”

Tāmaki Makaurau / Auckland is predicted to add a million people to its population over the next 30 years.

“We’ve already seen massive growth in our area, especially in Flat Bush and Ormiston, and we know there’s more expected across the region.

“Continued population growth and greater uncertainty around the future of our climate, means we’ll see a massive increase in the demand for water in our city and we have to be prepared for that,” Light says.

Just pop down to the local hardware store and get a couple of valves please. These American-made shut-off valves cost about $160,000 each.

“Watercare is charged with ensuring that can happen and while it is actively working to make the supply more resilient, you obviously need to have the facilities to store treated water.”

Board member John Spiller says the site already has the capacity to store 120 million litres but adding another reservoir will help future-proof supply.

“The project has involved building and connecting a new reservoir, first by establishing an access road, and now building the reservoir itself – work that is nearing completion.

“Having seen what is involved, the complexity of the operation, and just the huge amount of work that is needed, I don’t think I’ll ever turn on the tap and take water for granted again.”

Filling of the reservoir is planned for early January, although Watercare experts say that may be brought forward to December, so that the holiday period can be used for water-tightness testing.