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Sha Tin Water Treatment Works, Hong Kong

Aurecon contributes its structural and geotechnical engineering skills to part of Hong Kong’s largest water treatment works

The Sha Tin Water Treatment Works is the largest water treatment works in Hong Kong, supplying approximately 30 per cent of the Territory’s total water demand.

Aurecon was appointed to take part in the Advance Works Contract for the expansion and in-situ reprovisioning of the aged South Works water treatment facility. The Advance Works Contract increases the facility’s treatment capacity from 364 000 cubic metres per day to 550 000 cubic metres per day, to meet fresh water demands from planned new urban housing developments.

Aurecon is designing the works that must be undertaken before demolition of existing facilities so that the main reprovisioning works can commence.

The major elements of works include:

  • Site formation works
  • Reinforced concrete structural design
    - Logistics centre
    - Temporary power house
    - Flow meter house
    - Hydro turbine house
    - Valve chambers
  • Steel structural design
    - Galvanized steel platforms and walkways with support and footing for temporary wash-water recovery tank
    - Steel platform and support for process piping
    - Steel support frame for electrical cables via external walls and roof of the existing wash-water pump house
  • Temporary works design
    - Temporary soil nails for piling platform and access road for bored pile wall construction

Designing for the complex ground conditions

The sloped terrain was a complex challenge due to the following reasons:

  • Ongoing work in a live operating environment
  • Limited working space between the temporary platform and permanent works
  • Operation of heavy-duty bored piling plant on the slope crest
  • Transporting excavated material off site
  • Minimising heat works such as welding to enhance worker safety
  • Working near the existing chlorination building and chemical house (dangerous chemicals safety risk)

Working in a live environment

All works had to take place within the live operating environment of the water treatment plant. Aurecon developed an environment monitoring plan and confirmed each monitoring checkpoint location with resident site staff before carrying out the site works.

Safety design strategy

Safety was a primary focus throughout the design and construction stages.

Innovative design of the temporary works enabled Aurecon to eliminate the use of massive soil nail heads on temporary soil nails for slope stabilisation. By designing reinforcement to be placed near smaller nail heads, it avoided the need for temporary working platforms for soil nail head installation. This was a positive step in reducing the risk of workers falling from height.

Recognising the inherent safety demands of the site, Aurecon designed its steel structures with bolt connections, rather than welding connections to avoid hot works and to prioritise safety at all times.

Award-winning approach

Although construction is still ongoing, the project is already being recognised for its safety, environmental, and social considerations. In recognition of the design team that contributed to eliminating, reducing and mitigating the health and safety risks during the project, it was presented with the following awards:

  • International Design for Safety Award from The Lighthouse Club 2018 (Commended)
  • The Considerate Constructors Site Award Scheme (2017) recognised the project with two awards for its demonstration towards the public and the neighbourhood of good site safety, environmental performance, and considerate attitude in carrying out the works:
    - Considerate Contractors Site Award (Public Works ‒ New Works)
    - Outstanding Environmental Management & Performance Award (Public Works ‒ New Works)
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