Water restrictions for Christchurch and Lyttelton Harbour have been lifted.
Level-three restrictions were put in place in March to reduce demand for water while Christchurch City Council carried out upgrades to the city’s below-ground well heads.
Water Supply Improvement Programme Manager Helen Beaumont says the cooler weather means people are now using much less water on their lawns and gardens.
“We’ve been very grateful for residents’ cooperation with water restrictions while we’ve worked to upgrade our wells.
“The household demand for water is now much less than we saw over summer, and as we move into winter, demand will drop even further, allowing us to take more wells out of service, upgrade them and gradually stop chlorine treatment.”
Ms Beaumont says winter flow rates will also mean less chlorine for some parts of the city.
“Lower flow rates through the network over winter mean we will also be able to halve the chlorine dosage to some areas, as there is more time for the chlorine to disinfect the water before it reaches people’s taps.”
The Council today approved a work programme that will see 75 per cent of the city’s drinking water supply chlorine free by the end of the month, and 100 per cent by the end of September. From the end of July, chlorine treatment will only be needed at times of high demand.
The water supply network will be reconfigured to mostly use pump stations supplied by upgraded wells, while keeping some chlorination equipment on standby until September in case of spikes in demand.
“There will be times between July and September when we need to temporarily reintroduce chlorine to some parts of the city so we can meet demand and keep the water safe for residents while we complete our work,” Ms Beaumont says.
Chlorine treatment will continue until the end of July for part of Christchurch’s central water supply zone, including households in Sydenham, Beckenham, Opawa, St Martins, Spreydon, Hoon Hay, Cashmere, Bowenvale and Huntsbury.