Construction

Abu Dhabi gravity tunnel increases sustainability

41km long gravity tunnel allows for all the sewage to flow outside the city

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Engineer Essa Al Maidoor, chairman of UAE’s Society of Engineers, speaking on the sidelines of the Annual Tunnelling Conference & Exhibition (ATCE) at Dubai’s Intercontinental Hotel, has said that the new 41 kilometre long gravity tunnel in Abu Dhabi will help increase sustainability in the UAE capital.

Al Maidoor spoke exclusively to Big Project ME about the recently constructed gravity tunnel by Abu Dhabi’s Strategic Tunnel Enhancement Programme (STEP).

“Areas in the GCC have high groundwater; the one of the major concerns during large-scale developments in the region is therefore sewerage. Most areas across the region are flat and lack slopes, which would otherwise help water flow out,” he said.

“Pump stations are therefore used to allow for water flow, but they too have their drawbacks – they can agitate the sewage more and are often more smelly since there are too many chemical mixing processes involved,” Al Maidoor added.

“The 41km long gravity tunnel allows for all the sewage to flow outside the city, at the end of which a pump station transfers it to a treatment plant. It allows for greater sustainability since maintenance costs are reduced and it allows for uninterrupted services.”

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