Aqua Domitia, the largest pipeline construction in France: a lever for regional competitiveness
To bring water from the Rhone near Montpellier to Beziers by 2020 to ensure the raw water supply for regional economic activities (agriculture, tourism), to safeguard drinking water resources and to preserve the quality of regional aquatic areas: this is the purpose of the Aqua Domitia project overseen by the Languedoc-Roussillon Region and BRL. “This project is certainly less dramatic than a new highway or railway line, yet it is a lever for regional competitiveness”, says Jean-François Blanchet, CEO of BRL. “It is a long term substantial resource for the region. It will allow improved adaptation to the impacts of climate change: securing drinking water supply and reasonable irrigation of vineyards as well as diversification crops without creating additional pressure on local water resources. It is currently the largest pipeline construction site in France!”
What are the major water issues in France? The first is optimised management. Namely, “elements correctly dimensioned and sufficiently protected to minimise repair costs, built with durable and high-performance materials that are easy to maintain.” Then there is the issue of the impacts of community consolidation. “The new configurations will raise the question of optimising water distribution system infrastructures and public water services management methods,” concludes Jean-François Blanchet.
Some figures from the Aqua Domitia project
- 190 km of buried pipelines
- 50 km of large distribution pipelines (diameter 600 to 1200 mm).
- 140 km of secondary network pipelines (100 to 400 mm).
- Investment: €200 million. As well as the pipelines, the project includes a large 3.6 m3 / s pumping station, as well as storage reservoirs.
- Calendar: by the end of 2015, 50% of the infrastructure will be completed. The remaining half will be built between 2016 and 2020.
- Impact on employment in public works: all the sites will create nearly 1,200 jobs (FTE)