Windmill Hill Reservoir and Trunk Watermain to Ratoath

Irish Water is progressing plans to increase the storage capacity at Windmill Hill Reservoir and replace the existing watermain between the Reservoir and Ratoath, improving security of supply for residents and businesses in Ratoath and Ashbourne.

Irish Water, working in partnership with Meath County Council, is replacing over 7km of problematic, old water mains in Ratoath that were prone to frequent bursts and caused water supply disruptions for customers in both Ratoath and Ashbourne. The old water mains are being replaced by high density polyethylene (plastic) pipes which will address low water pressure particularly in Ratoath which are encountered during periods of peak demand and enable long term growth of Ratoath and Ashbourne.

In addition, Irish Water plans to construct an additional storage reservoir at Windmill Hill. This additional infrastructure will mitigate the impact any bursts in the existing watermain that supplies Windmill Hill Reservoir from Staleen Water Treatment Plant which is located between Donore and Duleek.

Irish Water is proposing to improve the energy efficiency and reduce the carbon footprint of the reservoir by installing 212 solar panels to generate clean, renewable electricity. This investment will benefit the local community by improving the performance of the plant and making it more resilient in the event of power outages.


What is involved as part of this project?

  • Construction of a new 450/350mm diameter trunk watermain that will replace the existing 300mm asbestos cement main between Windmill Hill and Ratoath. The replacement watermain will run parallel to the existing watermain predominately in public roads as follows:
  1. L5003 from the reservoir site at Windmill Hill to the junction with the R155 at the entrance to Tayto Park.
  2. Along the R155 from the entrance to Tayto park to the junction with the R125 in Ratoath town.
  • Construction of an elevated 4,700m³ circular concrete reservoir adjacent to the existing Windmill Hill concrete reservoirs
  • Installation of 212 solar panels which will generate approximately 67,954kw of electricity per year.
  • Upon completion of construction, the following biodiversity measures will be implemented.
    • Approximately 300m of new hedgerow will be planted at the reservoir site.
    • All residual space inside the reservoir site will be seeded with wild grass of local origin.
    • All hedgerow impacted during the construction of the new pipeline will be replaced with whitethorn and blackthorn.

Figure 1: The proposed new and existing reservoirs.

What are the benefits of these works?

​The works carried out as part of this project will:

  • Improve water supply security and resilience for homes and business in Ratoath and Ashbourne;
  • Increase the water transfer capacity to meet current demand and facilitate development in Ratoath and Ashbourne;
  • Reduce the plant’s carbon footprint;
  • Generate approximately 67, 954kw (kilowatt) of electricity per year;
  • This project will be delivered as part of Irish Water’s commitment to improving our energy efficiency as part of the Irish Water Biodiversity Plan. Improving energy efficiency is a key sustainability measure for improving our carbon footprint and reducing our greenhouse gas emissions.

Figure 2: Solar panels will be installed on the grounds of the existing reservoir.

What is happening next?

Irish Water plan to submit a planning application to Meath County Council for the proposed Reservoir in March 2022. Irish Water have begun (Feb 2022 the procurement process for the construction of the new Reservoir and water main.

We will endeavour to keep you updated as the project progresses.

Where will the construction be carried out?

The new reservoir is proposed to be built adjacent to the existing reservoir at Windmill Hill which is located between Curragha and Kilmoon Cross. All solar panels will be installed within the reservoir site. The replacement watermain will run parallel to the existing pipe predominately in the R155. 

Figure 3: Proposed location of new reservoir

Figure 4: Proposed route of replacement water main.

Figure 5: Solar panels will also be installed on top of the new Windmill Hill Reservoir.

Will there be traffic management in place?

As the replacement watermain is in the public road the project will require a significant amount of Traffic Management. Typical traffic management measures may include temporary traffic lights, stop/go systems, road closures and diversions. Signs will be erected in advance of works commencing to ensure road users are aware of current and upcoming traffic measures. Local access and emergency access will always be maintained and regular engagement with the community is planned throughout the project duration.

We will provide further information on traffic management measures as the project progresses.