Wastewater Treatment Plant Preserves Historic Ambiance of UK Coastal Region
Margate and Broadstairs, two of the principal towns in northeastern Kent, attract thousands of visitors each summer to enjoy the beaches and countryside within easy reach of London. Such popularity comes with a cost.
Infrastructure serving the area needed upgrading to keep pace with the rising population and meet the requirements of new UK and European Union laws. These laws were aimed at significantly improving wastewater treatment, particularly in coastal areas. Southern Water responded with plans to upgrade its system. In Black & Veatch, they found a partner that could balance seemingly conflicting goals.
One goal was to keep the area’s coastal waters clean and healthy for people and marine life. The other was to preserve the historic feel that makes these communities popular destinations. Black & Veatch helped to achieve both goals with concealed, cutting-edge technologies.
The joint venture with a UK-based company upgraded the process serving nearly 100,000 Margate and Broadstairs summer visitors and year-round residents. Black & Veatch provided design, mechanical electrical, instrumentation and control works services.
Before the upgrade, wastewater from the area was sent through local sewers to the existing Margate and Broadstairs wastewater pumping stations. At those stations, it received basic screening and was then pumped through outfalls reaching at least two kilometres into the sea. That system did not satisfy the new directives.
The new system designed by Black & Veatch consists of a wastewater pumping station upgrade at Broadstairs and a 2.3-kilometre pipeline to Margate, where all flows undergo screening and grit removal. At Margate, a new 1.8-metre diameter storm outfall tunnel runs 600 metres out to sea.
The partially treated wastewater is then pumped through an underground system to a new facility at Weatherlees for several stages of treatment. The cleaned wastewater is then pumped back to Foreness Point near Margate along a parallel underground pipe and released as clear water along the existing long sea outfall pipe.
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