09 July 2019

The R1.7-billion upgrade of
the Zandvliet Wastewater Treatment Works (WwTWs) is set to unlock development
in one of the fastest growing catchments in Cape Town, the city said on Sunday.

The Zandvliet WwTWs treats
effluent from the southern parts of Kuils River, Delft, Blackheath, Blackheath
Industria, Blue Downs, Eerste River, De Wijnlanden, Thembokwezi, Mxolisi
Phetani and Khayelitsha.

In its current form, the
WwTWs had the capability to handle 72-million litres of wastewater per day.
Upon completion of the massive upgrade project, the plant would be able to
process  a total of 90-million litres per

This would foster investment
in the area, as it would have the capability of safely catering for housing
developments, schools, commercial developments and job opportunities.

In addition to the increased
capacity, a new preliminary treatment process and upgrade of the existing
treatment modules would ensure that the quality of the treated effluent being
discharged was of an acceptable standard and complied with the license
conditions issued by the national department of water and sanitation.

Mayoral committee member for water and waste Xanthea Limberg said: “The City of Cape Town is among
the highest performers nationwide, in terms of treated effluent being
discharged from WwTWs within the standards required by the regulator.
Additionally, the plants operate in accordance with ISO standards,” she said.

The current scope of work
would see the construction of a membrane bioreactor, sludge dewatering
facilities, new inlet works, pump stations, primary settling tanks, and
disinfection facilities.

“Visiting the site and
witnessing the staggering scale of the project really drove home how much work
has been done thus far, and how much still lies ahead in this mammoth upgrade
of the Zandvliet WwTWs,” Limberg said.

Rapid population growth and
changing wastewater characteristics over the years had placed a huge strain on
existing wastewater treatment processes. As such, the city considered upgrades
of several wastewater treatment plants a priority, and had over R9-billion
worth of upgrades to WwTWs either under way, or at some stage of the
procurement process.

The commissioning of the new plant was anticipated to be by December 2023. Soon thereafter, further expansion would be implemented to cater for continuing urban growth in the area. The existing plant would continue to operate and treat wastewater throughout this period.

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