$30m Homebush project well behind schedule

PIERS FULLER
Last updated 09:59 17/10/2012

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Wet weather and changes to plans have put Masterton's $30 million waste water plant upgrade well behind schedule.

Masterton District Council chief executive Wes ten Hove says they are expecting the project to take another five months but are applying for another year on their building consent to "cover any weather contingencies".

The new oxidation ponds are now scheduled for filling in April , subject to favourable weather.

Masterton District Council had a meeting with neighbours on Monday night to update them on progress.

The original plan was to line the new oxidation ponds with clay material taken from on site. Estimations of the amount of material available proved incorrect and the council has had to modify its plans and use plastic in the new ponds. "To progress the project as pragmatically as possible, a plastic liner will be used - similar to Riversdale Beach ponds," Mr ten Hove says.

He did not say how much extra cost comes with applying plastic liners.

The new scheme employs a border dyke system to distribute the waste water across the land that was purchased for this purpose.

The border dykes are 70 per cent complete and will be finished this summer - ready for use after ponds are commissioned following filling.

Meanwhile, a new consultant engineer, SKM, has been appointed to the project replacing BECA.

MDC initiated legal action in March 2011 to force BECA to take responsibility for their $5 million underestimation of the cost of the project upgrade.

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This blowout in costs pushed the total bill for the contract out to more than $30 million, which does not include the several million dollars spent buying land and preparing resource consents for the project before the start of the infrastructure work.

Mayor Garry Daniell says MDC has now reached a settlement with Beca and all parties have accepted that.

- Wairarapa News

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