Regional: Stronger pipes and new reservoirs

Our services need to withstand shock and stresses. We have long-term plans to future proof the network to enable a strong regional economy and enhanced natural environment.

We began implementing our water supply resilience strategy “Towards 80-30-80” in early 2017. “Towards 80-30-80” is a long-term strategy focused on implementing a series of network improvement and community initiatives that will progressively improve the resilience of the water supply network over time.

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The key outcome of the strategy is to have a “80-30-80” resilient water supply network in place that will provide 80 per cent of our customers, within 30 days of a reasonable seismic event (i.e. a 7.5 magnitude earthquake), with 80 per cent of their drinking water needs. 

We work with a 'top down’ approach - focused on providing the key infrastructure we think is required to get our region back up and running again following a significant event. 

Major projects

Prince of Wales/Omāroro Reservoir

The proposed new 35 million litre Prince of Wales/Omāroro reservoir will add capacity to Wellington’s water storage network, significantly enhancing resilience to disaster events.

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It will be built to modern seismic standards, ensuring it remains fully operational  following a significant earthquake. It will also enhance the operational resilience of the water supply network, allowing Wellington Water to undertake essential works on other reservoirs, pipes and network infrastructure with little impact on local water supply.

Read more on the Prince of Wales/Omāroro Reservoir

Read FAQs on the Prince of Wales/Omāroro Reservoir

Exploratory Harbour Bores

Could an emergency water supply for Wellington be found beneath Wellington Harbour? That’s the big question the exploratory harbour bores project is looking to answer. It involves drilling exploratory bores into the Waiwhetu Aquifer that extends under the harbour floor and running tests to see if the water quality and water quantity is suitable. Drilling is still underway, but depending on results, it could provide a good alternative to building a cross-harbour pipeline.

Read more on Alternative water source for Wellington – exploratory harbour bores

Read our 2 June 2017 media statement: Looking for drinking water beneath the harbour

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Our work for long-term improvements to water supply resilience is made up of a combination of new initiatives and prioritisation of future improvement expenditure - renewals and upgrades.