Irish Water has submitted a planning application to Wicklow County Council seeking permission for the construction of a pipeline and additional structures for the transfer of treated drinking water from Vartry to Callowhill.  The new pipeline will secure the water supply to North Wicklow and South Dublin for the long-term and ensure the Vartry Water Supply Scheme continues to meet all drinking water standards.

Treated drinking water from the Vartry Water Treatment Plant provides drinking water for one of the most densely populated areas in the country. The supply area stretches from north Wicklow to south Dublin and serves more than 200,000 people.

The Vartry Water Supply Scheme was originally constructed in the 1860s and was a feat of engineering for its time, which involved the construction of a four kilometre long tunnel under Callowhill to deliver water to the area. The tunnel is in a poor state of repair and is being replaced by the new pipeline which will secure the water supply. The proposed works will include:

  • A pumping station at the existing Vartry Water Treatment Plant
  • Four kilometres of buried pipeline from Vartry to Callowhill
  • A break pressure tank and a hydropower turbine at Callowhill to recover renewable energy from the pumped water

A planning application was submitted to Wicklow County Council in April 2016 for the required upgrade to the Vartry Water Treatment plant.

Geoff O’Sullivan, Project Manager with Irish Water said “We are pleased to submit this planning application which is an important step in securing the drinking water to the Vartry Water Supply area of north Wicklow and south Dublin. The scheme is over 150 years old, has had no major upgrade since it was built and is now in need of urgent investment. This application is part of a €200 million investment in the scheme which will secure the drinking water supply for the area for decades to come.”

The construction of the pipeline is a key element of the Vartry Water Supply Upgrade Project, which also includes the upgrade of the existing water treatment plant, improvements to ageing pipes and fittings within the dam of the reservoir and improvements to the Vartry dam spillway to allow for more intense rainfall events to ensure public safety.

For further information, please visit our Vartry Water Supply Scheme page.

Dublin, Wicklow

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