The Public Services Company of Heredia (ESPH) announced last Friday the initiation of a sewer and wastewater treatment project in the province of Heredia.
$30 million in government funds for the project’s first phase have been secured, with future financing available through Banco Nacional de Costa Rica, said Francisco Angulo, the project’s spokesman and head of research and development for ESPH.
Currently, the only existing sewer system in Heredia is in the central canton. These waters flow into an open area south of the city known as the “cloacas,” or raw sewerage zone, and receive no treatment.
The first phase of the project, which Angulo estimates will take five to seven years to complete, will involve construction of a treatment plant and installation of a sewer system in the towns of San Isidro and San Rafael de Heredia, as well as expanding the existing network in the central canton.
In roughly three weeks, the ESPH will open an international bid for the project. The company hired will undertake a feasibility study and design the sewer system and treatment plant.
Angulo said the project is needed to protect the aquifers and underground springs in this water-rich province, adding that water from septic systems are prone to leak and pollute underground waters. Angulo said Heredia supplies 70 percent of the Central Valley’s drinking water.
The first phase of the project will be designed to allow for expansion of the sewer system to other cantons of Heredia over the next two decades.
Vice President Alfio Piva, in attendance at the project’s inauguration, said, “The effective treatment of wastewaters is fundamental, given that water is the main source of a country’s development. A project such as this one will not only improve the quality of life for all Heredians, but will allow the country to truly utilize its natural resources.”