Guided by its vision to provide world-class wastewater treatment and stormwater drainage services enabling the sustainable development of Hong Kong, the Drainage Services Department is upgrading Shek Wu Hui Sewage Treatment Works (SWHSTW) to become the largest tertiary sewage treatment works in Hong Kong. The conventionally function-driven plant will install state-of-the-art treatment technologies to double its treatment capacity while producing high quality effluent for discharge and reuse. Innovative treatment systems, namely Hong Kong’s first thermal hydrolysis process unit, will be installed to improve biogas yield for electricity and reduce the plant’s reliance on conventional fuels. Together with new community co-use provisions, such as the ecology garden and riverside walkway, SWHSTW will be rebranded as Shek Wu Hui Effluent Polishing Plant and an “Environmental Campus”, turning a traditionally “NIMBY” facility into an integral asset of the local neighbourhood.
Shek Wu Hui Sewage Treatment Works, originally built in the 1980s, has been serving the Fanling and Sheung Shui areas for over 30 years, during which time it has witnessed the rapid development of both towns, from quiet rural villages to the major population hubs that they are today. The plant will embark on its third upgrade to double its capacity from 93,000 m3/day to 190,000 m3/day. After completion, it will be the largest tertiary sewage treatment works in Hong Kong, meeting future development needs while also increasing effluent quality to meet rising discharge standards.
From a traditionally unwanted facility into an Environmental Campus
The Drainage Services Department (DSD) takes this opportunity to transform the conventionally function-driven plant into a green eco-campus, introducing various sustainable design features and provisions for community integration. The plant adopts the theme “Environmental Campus linking with Community”, incorporating educational routes that guide visitors through a “journey of water” tour. General public can also learn about sustainable living concepts by visiting the exhibits displayed in the public open spaces on site, such as the green roofs, ecology garden and riverside walkway. We are confident that these provisions will turn a traditionally unwanted facility into an integral asset in the local environment.
Public participation in planning and developing the design of Shek Wu Hui Effluent Polishing Plant (SWHEPP) was instrumental in garnering support for the project. During the initial stages of public engagement, villagers and other key stakeholders were reluctant to support the project, citing concerns relating to odour and other negative impacts that may worsen. Understanding this, the project team spent great effort in reaching different stakeholders, collected their views and proposed new technologies to improve environmental quality. Through open dialogues and collaborative design workshops, stakeholders were able to see the value of the project and the potential opportunity in creating a meaningful resource for their community. As a result, the collaborative design process brought upon a sense of belonging and ownership to the stakeholders, fostered a constructive rapport with the project team, and eventually gained their support for the project.
SWHEPP and BEAM Plus
To achieve Platinum rating, SWHEPP leveraged its advantage in locality, energy efficiency and water-sensitive provisions to earn credits in their respective categories. Situated in Sheung Shui countryside surrounded by three rivers, SWHEPP was very accessible to green space and blue assets. Together with sensibly planned spaces based on local standards and guidelines, SWHEPP provided high quality recreational spaces for both the public and plant operators.
Harvesting the “green” biogas from anaerobic digestion of sewage sludge enabled a significant amount of renewable energy to be supplied to the SWHEPP. Site disposition and architectural shading devices also helped mitigate solar heat gain to the buildings. Finally, water-sensitive features, such as pervious pavement and reclaimed water production, helped secure the crucial overall scores to reach Platinum range.
|Internal Floor Area (IFA) (sqm)||45,000 (approx.)|
|Project Developer / Owner||Drainage Services Department, HKSAR Government|
|Project Manager||AECOM Asia Company Limited|
|Architect||AECOM Asia Company Limited|
|Landscape Architect||AECOM Asia Company Limited|
|M&E Engineer||AECOM Asia Company Limited|
|C&S Engineer||AECOM Asia Company Limited|
|Main Contractor||Main Works Stage 1
Bestwise Envirotech Limited
Kwan Lee - Chun Wo Joint Venture
The Jardine Engineering Corporation, Limited
Main Works Stages 2 and 3
|Quantity Surveyor||AECOM Asia Company Limited|
|Sustainable Design Consultant||AECOM Asia Company Limited|
|Environmental Consultant||AECOM Asia Company Limited|
|Facility Manager||Drainage Services Department, HKSAR Government|
|Geotechnical Engineer||AECOM Asia Company Limited|
|BS Engineer||AECOM Asia Company Limited|
|Traffic Engineer||AECOM Asia Company Limited|
|Ecologist||AECOM Asia Company Limited|
|AVA Consultant||AECOM Asia Company Limited|