WSD turns North Point Pumping Station into artificial reef
The Water Supplies Department (WSD) today (January 31) removed a 960-tonne decommissioned pumping station at North Point waterfront and will turn it into an artificial reef in Outer Port Shelter, Sai Kung.
Officiating at the launching ceremony of the project, the Director of Water Supplies, Mr Chan Chi-chiu, said that the handling of the pumping station carried much significance in recycling of resources.
"We hope this project could inspire the local construction industry to give more thought to creating win-win situation between economising measures and environmental protection.”
"Our department will continue to contribute to the sustainable development in Hong Kong when we supply water for drinking and flushing purposes," Mr Chan said.
Built in 1965, the pumping station had been supplying salt water for flushing to North Point and Quarry Bay until its decommissioning in 1994, when its role in meeting the increasing population demand in the area was taken over by the new Quarry Bay Salt Water Pumping Station.
As the pumping station was still in operation during the construction of the Island Eastern Corridor (IEC), the highway had to be built above it, resulting in it becoming a "lone island" underneath.
The removal today has been carefully planned, taking into account the site constraints and the need for environmental protection.
Preparation works started on December 8, 2006. The crux of the marine operations was manoeuvred by a huge working barge and two 500-tonne floatation tanks. More than 30 piles supporting the whole pumping station structure, which was sandwiched by floatation tanks on both sides, were cut off at the seabed level by chain saw.
The operation today involved the cutting of the last four piles at the corners. After the whole 960-tonne structure was detached from the seabed, it was floated up by about 0.5 metre at 3 pm when the tide turned and started reaching the level of over 1.5 metres. The pumping station was winched slowly through the water between the IEC pile caps, which were protected temporarily by rubber fenders and huge air bags. The whole pumping station and the floatation tanks were berthed at the side of "Nan Tin Zhu" after 30 minutes of towing.
The structure will be towed to Sai Kung waters and submerged into a gazetted artificial reef deployment site in Outer Port Shelter in the next two days.
With the advice of the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department (AFCD), the whole structure, with only inert materials remaining and additional openings cored to facilitate water circulation, will be submerged in Outer Port Shelter Artificial Reef Deployment Site in Sai Kung creating a good habitat for marine life.
The whole demolition works and marine operation, costing about $8 million, are undertaken by Chun Wo Construction and Engineering Co. Ltd., with the technical and logistics support from the Hong Kong Branch of Guangzhou Salvage Bureau of Communications, People's Republic of China.
The Director of Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation, Mrs Stella Hung, and Deputy Director of Guangzhou Salvage Bureau, Mr Kuang Jing-ming, also officiated at the ceremony today.
Ends/Wednesday, January 31, 2007