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Breakthrough of Harbour Area Treatment Scheme sewage tunnel between Aberdeen and Sai Ying Pun (with photos)

     The breakthrough of the Harbour Area Treatment Scheme (HATS) Stage 2A sewage tunnel (Aberdeen - Sai Ying Pun section) has marked a significant step forward in further improving the water quality of Victoria Harbour. The project has also provided valuable experience for the development of Hong Kong's tunnelling technology.
     Officiating at the breakthrough ceremony today (December 2), the Under Secretary for the Environment, Ms Christine Loh, said HATS is a major infrastructure project for collecting and treating sewage generated from both sides of Victoria Harbour. It is a world-class sewerage project in terms of the design and construction works. Since the commissioning of the Stage 1 project, the water quality of Victoria Harbour has been significantly improved. The Cross Harbour Race has thus been restored since 2011 as well.

     She said that the water quality of Victoria Harbour will be further improved when HATS Stage 2A is completed. She expressed her gratitude to the District Councils and the neighbouring residents for their support for the project, enabling the works to progress smoothly.

     The Stage 2A project will mainly collect sewage from the northern and southwestern parts of Hong Kong Island and convey it to the Stonecutters Island Sewage Treatment Works. The works have commenced progressively since July 2009. A drill-and-blast method has been adopted to construct a 21-kilometre sewage tunnel with depths varying from about 70 metres to 160m below sea level. The section between Aberdeen and Sai Ying Pun is about 7.5km long. The first blast was carried out in October 2010 and the breakthrough was completed on November 14 this year.

     Also officiating at the ceremony, the Director of Drainage Services, Mr Chan Chi-chiu, said the Aberdeen - Sai Ying Pun section runs through highly permeable fractured rock zones underneath highly populated urban areas, making the prevention of underground water drawdown causing ground settlement the biggest challenge of the project. To overcome this problem, the Drainage Services Department drew reference from the experience of Scandinavian countries and adopted high-pressure grouting materials and technology in an extensive and systematic manner. This was not only a successful trial but will also serve as useful reference for projects of a similar nature in the future.

     Other officiating guests at today's ceremony included the Assistant Director of Drainage Services (Sewage Services), Mr Chan Pak-keung, and the Vice Chairman of the Central and Western District Council, Mr Chan Hok-fung.

Ends/Monday, December 2, 2013
Issued at HKT 18:55


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