Big step for big sewerage scheme

PROGRESS has been made on a long promised scheme to upgrade sewerage works in smaller towns around Laois.

PROGRESS has been made on a long promised scheme to upgrade sewerage works in smaller towns around Laois.

Charlie Flanagan TD welcomed the announcement by the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government, Phil Hogan, of the approval of plans for five new wastewater treatment plants located in Abbeyleix, Durrow, Mountrath, Rathdowney and Stradbally. The Minister has cleared the Tender Documents for the Design, Build and Operate (DBO) Contract of the so-called Laois Grouped Towns Sewerage Scheme.

The contract is part of the Laois Grouped Towns Sewerage Scheme and is included as a ‘Contract to Start’ in the Department’s Water Services Investment Programme 2010 – 2012.

Plans for the schemes have been with the Department for the past two years and the projects were originally promised more than a decade ago by the previous Government.

Deputy Flanagan said the new plants would ensure environmental protection of the highest standard.

“I am delighted that the proposed works have been given the green light. I echo the comments of Minister Hogan when I urge the Council to move forward as quickly as possible with the invitation of tenders for these plants.

“I have been actively working on this since the change of Government in March. This is a vital piece of local infrastructure for South County Laois and will ensure that the 5 towns have modern and advanced water sewage systems,” he said.

The approved DBO Tender Documents set out the requirements for a contract which will comprise the design, build, operation and maintenance for a period of 20 years of five new wastewater treatment plants, ranging in capacity from 3,000 pe to 4,500 population equivalent.

“The proposed works being undertaken on this contract will ensure that the local environment is protected through the treatment of wastewater to the highest standards prior to discharge. Furthermore, I expect to approve the contract documents for the works to upgrade and extend the towns’ network collection systems shortly”, continued the Minister.

“This important contract reflects the Government’s commitment to continuing capital investment under the Water Services Investment Programme to improve the water services infrastructure in County Laois. My approval of the Tender Documents for this major contract clears the way for Laois County Council to seek tenders for this work,” said Minister Hogan.

Given the importance of the scheme locally, the Minister said he would urge the Council to quickly press ahead with the invitation of tenders, with a view to getting this major scheme to construction at the earliest possible date.