Cheers to Garrymere Water Supply Upgrade

The Garrymere community celebrated the completion of its water supply upgrade today, a project involving significant input from locals.

Mayor cuts the ribbon for the new water supply upgradeMayor Dan Gordon officially cut the ribbon on the new Ultraviolet (UV) treatment facility and was joined by the Garrymere Water Supply Advisory Group, Councillors, Community Board Members, contractors and staff.

The upgrade ensures the water supply is compliant with the Drinking-water Standards for New Zealand (DWSNZ), and Mayor Dan Gordon described the project as ‘incredibly complex’, involving a number of challenges for both staff and the community.

“It was a long road to get here, and residents were asked to consider a lot of technical information as we worked together to reach a high quality water treatment solution.

“The community gave us clear direction and as a result of their feedback, the Council changed the way UV projects like these are funded in order to reduce the burden on small communities like Garrymere”.

The Garrymere Water Advisory Group was established to allow residents, staff and elected members to work collaboratively through the options for the upgrade.

Deputy Chair Steve Gregory said it was a careful balancing act to ensure a high quality water supply was achieved, while keeping the upgrade affordable.

“On small schemes like this it’s especially challenging, as new infrastructure can have a huge impact on rates for scheme residents. We worked together with the Council through a number of complex issues and we’re really pleased to have come up with a great solution for our community.”

The upgrade was designed entirely within the Council’s Project Delivery Unit and has lifted Garrymere’s water quality to be fully compliant with the DWSNZ.

Mayor Gordon says, “It’s a real strength of this Council that we have this in-house expertise. It allows costs to be minimised and ensures a quality result.”

The Mayor closed the ceremony by thanking the community for their involvement and for the collaborative way they worked with the Council to achieve this result.

“The key to the success of this project was listening to our community and working with them to find a workable solution.  It took time, and it has been challenging, but worth it to make sure our Council water supplies deliver safe drinking water to our communities.”

The Council has committed to making all water schemes in the District compliant with the Drinking-water Standards. With Garrymere complete, Poyntzs Road is now the only scheme left to upgrade.

Council is working with Poyntz Road residents on this at present and expects it to be completed in 2021.