Work underway to replace MacCurtain Street's leaking water pipes ahead of two-way traffic system

Work underway to replace MacCurtain Street's leaking water pipes ahead of two-way traffic system
MacCurtain Street is to revert to a two-way traffic system. Picture: Denis Minihane.

A five-month project to replace old cast-iron water pipes in MacCurtain Street is underway.

Irish Water and Cork City Council, will replace over 3.5 kilometres of old, damaged pipes in the area with modern, high-density polyethylene plastic pipes.

The work began in recent days and will continue until May and aims to tackle the high levels of leakage in the area.

The works will also involve the installation of service connections and removal of lead pipe connections. 

These upgrades are being carried out prior to the next phase of urban renewal works under the Cork City Centre Movement Strategy that will see MacCurtain Street reverting back to a two-way traffic system.

City Hall said they will publish plans this year to change MacCurtain Street back to a two-way system to slow down traffic and make the area more pedestrian friendly.

The works will be carried out on behalf of Irish Water by Coffey Northumbrian Ltd.

Works on the south side of MacCurtain Street, including Harley Street, begin this month and are expected to be completed by the end of March. Works on the north side of MacCurtain Street, are expected to commence in March and be completed by the end of May. Works in adjoining streets will continue to September completing a mains upgrade in the area.

“Most of the water mains network in this bustling part of Cork City is extremely dated. As they get older, cast iron pipes can become severely corroded and have a high level of leakage as well as being subject to frequent bursts. At present, it is estimated that almost half the treated drinking water in Ireland is lost to leaks in the network,” said Steven Blennerhassett, Leakage Reduction Programme, Irish Water.

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