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Hunter Water, NSW has completed a $13 million upgrade to its wastewater system to end the sewer overflows that, for years, have regularly occurred following heavy rainfall in Adamstown and surrounding suburbs.

The eight year project used horizontal directional drilling to tunnel beneath Merewether Golf Course and through the hill at Merewether Heights to Burwood Waste Water Treatment Plant, all without disturbing life above the surface.

Hunter Water Chief Operating Officer Darren Cleary said the project’s 4.5 kilometres of pipeline plus a new pumping station off Glebe Road would immediately improve the system in Adamstown and surrounding suburbs.

“During wet weather, water infiltrates the wastewater system. Because Adamstown is particularly low lying, it’s especially susceptible to heavy rain flooding the network and leading to sewer overflows.

“This upgrade means the Adamstown system can remove wastewater much faster and greatly reduce the potential for overflows in the area.

“This project involved the longest horizontal directional drilling distance undertaken by Hunter Water in order to minimise disruption to local residents and businesses,” he said.

Member for Newcastle Tim Owen said the Adamstown upgrade was part of a long-term strategy for improving wastewater performance throughout Newcastle.

“This work will provide residents with a noticeably more reliable waste water system and also allow for any future growth in the area.

“The NSW Government is dedicated to delivering new and improved infrastructure for people of the Lower Hunter to ensure they have what’s needed for today and the future,” he said.

Excess water often enters the wastewater system in wet weather due to residents illegally connecting stormwater pipes to the sewer system. Hunter Water has an ongoing program of testing for illegal stormwater connections and encourages customers to ensure their stormwater is plumbed correctly.

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