New water-production plant Pointe Blanche operational

POSTED: 03/11/14 12:37 AM

St. Maarten – The reverse osmosis water-production plant in Pointe Blanche goes online today. Minister Cornelius de Weever said in a press release that the plant will be producing at full capacity – 3,700 cubic meters every day. The Minister has a reason to celebrate: today he is exactly three years in office as the successor of Maria Buncamper-Molanus who was forces to step down in December 2010.

“Today is a historic day for me as it marks my three years in office as Minister of Public Health, Social Development and Labor,” the minister stated. “The timing of this major accomplishment could not have been planned any better. The vision and provisions already built and included for the second plant symbolizes the joint effort and labor involved in this project to avoid the water shortage that our country encountered before. This vision illustrates the need to set priorities in government and accomplish them in a timely manner. I am eternally grateful for each person for their contribution.”

Sint Maarten is making an important step forward with the Pointe Blanche improvements in the water supply infrastructure with the commissioning of the new seawater intake, the new reverse osmosis drinking water plant, the drinking water pump station and the new storage tank in Pointe Blanche, all situated at a strategic location.

A second phase is included in the addendum to the water supply agreement with Seven Seas Water, signed by Minister De Weever in 2012 involves the construction of another reverse osmosis unit, also with a daily production capacity of 3,700 cubic meter, will begin this year. It will be located in the same building as the first plant.

Over the last two months, Seven Seas Water and Gebe have worked intensively on the completion of the technical installations. Gebe took care of the installations to provide electrical power and the hydraulic installations to take in the water; Seven Seas Water worked the seawater intake station and the reverse osmosis production plant.

With flushing, tweaking, chlorinating, testing of the water quality and other start up procedures completed, Seven Seas Water is ready to take the plant into a twenty four hour and seven days operation mode, producing 3,700 cubic meters per day. According to the ministry, a typical household consumes half a cubic meter per day.

Gebe transports the drinking water via a new water line to the Point Blanche storage tank. This facility has a capacity of 3,000 cubic meters. It was built last year at an elevation of 60 meters above the production plant. From this reservoir, Gebe will distribute drinking water through its network to consumers.

The new plant will increase the guaranteed capacity by 26% and safeguards compliance with the present consumption. The plant also makes it possible to take other units in Cay Bay and Cupecoy out of service for necessary maintenance. With the new production capacity, all tanks can be kept continuously at around one hundred percent full, therefore further increasing reliability in supply to consumers.

The construction of the second tank in Pointe Blanche has already started; contractor ERP is executing excavation and foundation work.

The official inauguration of the water plant will take place later this month. This week the completion will be celebrated at site with all entities that have contributed to its construction.

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