Hope Bay/ St. Margaret’s Bay Water Supply System to Benefit 5,000


Minister of Housing, Transport, Water and Works, Robert Pickersgill on Friday, July 27, officially commissioned the $150 million Hope Bay/St. Margaret’s Bay water supply system in Portland into service.
The scheme, which was upgraded under Phase Two of the European Union-funded Rural Water Supply Project, will benefit some 5,000 persons. Construction began in May of last year and was completed this month, with works including the installation of more than 12 kilometres of new water supply pipes; the construction of new water intake and state of the art treatment facilities; the construction of a new reservoir with a capacity of 450 cubic metres at the location of the water treatment plant; and the installation of water metering devices at the production facility, transmission mains and service connections.
Speaking at the commissioning ceremony, Minister Pickersgill said the completion of the system was another demonstration of the Government’s commitment to the continued rapid expansion and improvement of water supply services throughout the country. He informed that 74 per cent of Jamaican households are now supplied directly with piped potable water via house to house connections, and that a further 11 per cent are supplied with potable water by way of stand pipes and other means.
In addition, he said the quality of the water that is being supplied to households continues to be rated among the very best in the world, giving the country much to be proud of.
Mr. Pickersgill noted that this achievement has been made despite the fact that the provision of water is an expensive and challenging undertaking, characterized by the need for large capital outlay and a long time in which to recover investment.
He pointed out however that notwithstanding the excellent and record-breaking achievements in the water sector the government recognizes the need to achieve even more success if its water policy objectives are to be fully met. Asserting that the commissioning of the Hope Bay/St Margaret’s Bay Water Supply System does not end the effort to improve and expand the National Water Commission (NWC) service in the area, he said the NWC will continue to do all that is necessary to maintain and extend the level of its service there. Also addressing the function was Head of the European delegation to Jamaica, Ambassador Mazzacchi Alemani, who expressed appreciation for the close cooperation, which has existed over the years between the European Union and Jamaica. He urged the residents of the area to protect and preserve the system by paying their bills and ensuring that illegal connections are not made. In addition to the Hope Bay/St. Margaret’s Bay system, the EU has also funded the rehabilitation of water supply schemes in the Christiana/Spaldings community of Manchester, and the Milk River area in Clarendon.

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