Wednesday 22 February 2017 10:01:49 PM

Curran Welcomes Essential Sewer Improvement Works In Downpatrick
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NI Water is pleased to announce that work is progressing well on an essential £2.6 million package of improvements to the sewerage infrastructure in Downpatrick town centre.

A holding tank is being constructed in the Market Street Car Park.

A holding storm storage tank is being constructed in the Market Street Car Park in Downpatrick

A new pumping station with storm storage and increased pumping capacities, new pumping mains and sewer upgrades are currently underway in the town. The main contract got underway in November 2013, with works on the new pumping station within the existing car park behind the Grove Shopping Centre.

A spokesperson from NI Water said: “Our contractor BSG Civil Engineering Ltd are currently installing the new pumping main from Market Street to the existing terminal pumping station at Russell Park, plus installing an additional section of pumping main required to facilitate the new leisure centre development. This section of work requires a lane closure on Ballydugan Road between the entrance to Asda and the car park entrance beside Rathkeltair House. Two-way traffic will be maintained throughout this works phase with road crossings carried out via weekend/night time working.

“NI Water will continue to review the Traffic Management Plan for Market Street and liaise closely with DRD Roads Service to agree any proposed changes as pipelaying progresses. Further updates will be provided in advance of the future work phases to keep customers informed as this essential scheme progresses.

“The project will ultimately facilitate the relocation and upgrading of the existing sewerage pumping station from Market Street to the new site in the existing car park. This will reduce the risk of out of sewer flooding in Market Street, reduce storm overflows during wet weather conditions to the Plank Drain and generally enhance the sewerage system to meet future growth and demand. The overall programme of work is scheduled to be completed in late 2014.

“As with all work of this nature, there will be an element of disruption and NI Water and our contractor BSG would like to thank the public and local businesses for their patience and cooperation as this work progresses, and assure them that we will do everything we can to complete the work as quickly as possible with minimum disruption.”

Downpatrick area Councillor Dermot Curran said he welcomed the sewage improvements in Downpatrick and added: “For a very long time the town has been faced with the threat of flooding and there has been considerable damage and loss to businsses. But now at last we have a major much needed investment in the sewage infrastructure by NI Water. They  are building two large storm water holding tanks to absorb any sudden rise in water level.

“One of the holding tanks located in the Market Street Car Park is currently being installed. I spoke to the NI Water officials and they explained that although the tank will be buried deep into the ground, it will in fact be higher than ground level and will when it is finished will be landscaped to reduce its impacts. It will mean the small loss of some parking space.

“However, this new system, although I understand not guaranteed 100%, will give much comfort to the businesses in the lower Market Street area who were subjected to periodic flooding when the pumps and old system failed. There will be traffic distrurbance too in the centre of the town for another six weeks but this works are absolutely essential for Downpatrick. We cannot have our county town subject to flooding when we are trying to build up a tourist industry. I therefore ask everyone to be patient and drive carefully through the Downpatrick.”

Customer queries should be directed to Waterline on 08457 440088, quoting “BSG Market Street Sewerage Scheme”