Water works give something to ponder

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Scottish Water has completed a £3.8million project to install an innovative green pond technology in Cumbernauld.

The project will encourage numerous forms of wildlife and enhance water quality in the Red Burn, which flows through Cumbernauld Glen. Six ponds have been constructed at strategic locations that will collect and naturally treat surface water via a combination of settlement, sunlight and vegetation.

The ponds were visited by local councillors Elizabeth Irvine and Tom Johnston, who were also given a tour of the nearby Dunnswood Waste Water Treatment Works, which is also the focus of a massive upgrade programme.

The first pond was completed last year and is in the northern part of Cumbernauld Glen between Broom Road and Forest Road. Contractors Morrisons prepared the land by removing non-native coniferous trees and vegetation and re-planting native broadleaf saplings to replace the poor quality conifers. Major construction work on the pond was completed by late summer and replanting of trees took place in November.

Four ponds are situated just off the M80 and are visible from the road when entering Cumbernauld. The final pond is located out of view near the Dunnswood waste water treatment works – which is the focus of a £10.5million investment by Scottish Water.

Scottish Water agreed to fund a package of environmental improvements on adjacent land owned by the Scottish Wildlife Trust.

Brian Dalton, project manager, said: “Cumbernauld is geographically the high point for a number of burns in the Central Belt, with some flowing west to the River Clyde and the rest flowing east towards the River Forth - so water quality improvements here have a far reaching effect. These ponds will remove pollutants from the water and then return the treated water to the Red Burn.”

In addition to the ponds, the £10.5million Dunnswood waste water treatment works (WWTW) project is an ambitious investment to construct a whole new waste water treatment process alongside the existing process to comply with new standards for waste water treatment, and to provide for future population growth in the area as a result of development in and around Cumbernauld.

Paul Sharp, construction manager, Scottish Water Solutions welcomed the improvements and said: ““The works has performed well in years gone by but this significant investment will bring it up to 21st century standards.”