Western Aqueduct Project

Western Aqueduct Project

eThekwini Water & Sanitation

KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa

  • 73-km-long steel pipeline
  • 1,600 mm to 1,000 mm diameter trunk pipelines
  • 800 mm to 400 mm diameter branch pipelines
  • 20 ML and 10 ML reinforced concrete break pressure tanks
  • 400 ML per day water transfer capacity
  • Supplies water to 19 reservoirs along its route
Project Overview

The Western Aqueduct is the single, largest water infrastructure project undertaken by eThekwini Municipality. Commissioned in 2019, it presently supplies water to Durban from the Midmar Dam and the Spring Grove dams and will meet the needs of the Greater Durban region until 2036. It provides additional capacity of 400 ML of water per day to augment the 900 ML currently consumed daily by the city and is thus of high strategic and socio-economic importance to the Greater Durban region. Its route generally runs along existing municipal roads through the eThekwini region from Umlaas Road, terminating at Ntuzuma, Pinetown, and Tshelimnyama.

The professional team, consisting of Knight Piésold, Royal HaskoningDHV, and Naidu Consulting, formed the Western Aqueduct Joint Venture.

Project Role

The Western Aqueduct Project was undertaken in two phases and eight construction contracts. Knight Piésold was the lead consultant on both phases. The tasks undertaken by Knight Piésold included:

  • Preliminary design and route determination, including hydraulic analyses and pipeline sizing
  • Servitude negotiation and facilitating servitude registration, including temporary working space during construction
  • Facilitated detailed geotechnical investigations for pipe trenches, jacked sleeves, and river crossings,
  • Detailed design, including pipeline yield stress analyses, crotch plate and collar plate design, air valve sizing and positioning for air release and vacuum break
  • Detailed drawings, including graded longitudinal sections, chambers for air valves, scour valves, isolating valves, jacked sleeves, and cross connections
  • Construction supervision and quality monitoring of materials supplied, NDT testing, cathodic protection, and record management
  • Coordination, planning, and overseeing tie-ins into the existing bulk systems