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Which water pipe is best?

The victorian sewer system is a huge piece of infrastructure under the streets of London that serves nearly 9 million people. However, this massive infrastructure is due for an upgrade as it currently experiences sewer overflow during heavy rains about 50 times a year. The overflows are then funneled into the Thames river which is a major health risk for city residents.

In order to prevent these overflows, construction has begun on a massive tunnel project called the Tideway. This mega sewer will intercept the combined-sewer overflows on the eastern side of the Thames and transfer them to Beckton wastewater treatment plant.

The $7 billion project will include 39 kilometers of tunnels and will reduce the amount of polluting effluent that enters the Thames. It is the largest wastewater project in the U.K., but it has its detractors. For example, a West London resident complains that a shaft site in his neighborhood would stall the area’s development plans. Nevertheless, Otta says the fine-tuning of the project is helping it to stay within budget.

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