Killea Shared Waters Enhancement and Loughs Legacy (SWELL) project

Irish Water has recently commenced upgrade works at the Killea Wastewater Treatment Plant to improve water quality in Lough Foyle and Liberty Burn.

Irish Water has recently commenced construction works to construct a new plant to increase capacity of the current wastewater treatment infrastructure and also to provide secondary wastewater treatment for Killea and the surrounding area. The works will be delivered as part of the Shared Waters Enhancement & Loughs Legacy (SWELL) project. A €35m EU-funded project which aims to improve the quality of water in Carlingford Lough and Lough Foyle through the upgrade of wastewater assets on both sides of the border.

BSG Civil Engineering Ltd is working on behalf of Irish Water to deliver the project. The main construction works commenced in mid-June 2021 with completion expected in January 2022, with commissioning works to continue until summer 2022.

The SWELL project is being funded under the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). This project has been supported by the European Union’s INTERREG VA Programme, managed by the Special EU Programmes Body (SEUPB).

In Progress

Why is this project needed?

The existing wastewater treatment plant is hydraulically overloaded due to the pumping regime currently in place and the treatment system is also unable to treat wastewater to meet European standards at all times. As a result the plant is impacting on water quality. Upon completion the project will:

  • Provide increased treatment capacity to meet current needs of the town, allow for future growth and reduce the impact of storm water overflows.
  • Improve water quality of Liberty Burn, Lough Foyle and nearby coastal areas.

What is involved as part of this project?

In order to overcome the current deficiencies, the following infrastructural upgrades will be delivered at the Killea Wastewater Treatment Plant:

  • Construction of a new 800 Population Equivalent (PE) wastewater treatment plant on the existing site providing secondary treatment.
  • This will entail development of a new inlet works, storm water holding tank, primary settlement tanks, secondary biological treatment process using rotating biological contactors, final settlement tanks and new control building facility.
  • The existing treatment system is to be decommissioned.

Overview of proposed plant upgrade