Cairns Regional Council has completed the upgrade to its 65-year-old sewage pump station.

The $12 million project included the decommissioning and demolition of the old pump station (known as SPS K) and the construction of the new pump station (SPS CN1).

The largest of Cairns’ sewage pumping stations, it can transfer raw sewage from the network to the Northern Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP) in Aeroglen at the rate of 800L/second.

When future upgrades to the Northern WWTP are undertaken, the capacity will be enhanced to more than 1,300 litres/second, .

Mayor of Regional Cairns, Bob Manning, said that after more than two years of construction works, the completion of the project was very welcome.

“Given the age of the previous pump, built more than 65 years ago, our growing population and the increasing density of the city, the pumping station required an upgrade to adequately service areas across the Cairns CBD and Edge Hill,” Mr Manning said.

“Maintaining, upgrading and replacing infrastructure like this is a core component of Council’s operations and critical to the city.

“I know that construction caused some disruptions, but residents and nearby businesses will certainly welcome its completion and an end to the unpleasant odours that were once associated with this pumping station.”

One of the visible parts of the upgrade houses new switchboards, while a smaller building is home to Ergon equipment. The majority of the work is underground.

About 5.500t of soil was excavated and more than 1,000 cubic metres of concrete poured to construct the new pumping station.

Below ground is a new wet well, pipes, and a chamber to house associated underground fittings and valves reaching a depth of more than 17 metres.

An odour control unit has also been installed.

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