Award of Excellence: Water Systems Category
Talla Aqueduct Repairs
Newbury Berkshire, Scotland
Submitted by Accrete Limited
Over 50% of the drinking water for Scotland’s Capital City, Edinburgh, is supplied through the 38-mile-long Talla Aqueduct from the Talla Reservoir in the Scottish Borders to Fairmilehead Water Treatment Works in Edinburgh. This amounts to more than 33 million U.S. gallons of raw water every day. Incredibly this massive structure and its associated reservoir were built over 100 years ago, beginning in 1895, and opened less than 10 years later in 1905. Its construction was a tremendous undertaking as, even today, many sections through open moorland are inaccessible by road.
After more than 90 years of this exposure, the overall concrete structure had stood up remarkably well and is a credit to the Scottish engineers of the last century. However, the weather had taken its toll in several areas—particularly due to freeze thaw attack on the externally exposed sections.
The combination of these problems combined with local ground movement and landslides over the years, had created some potentially serious structural problems—with cracks through the roof allowing external water ingress to the aqueduct and cracks through the concrete and stonework allowing increasing amounts of valuable raw water leakage from the aqueduct. This leakage was causing further damage to the structures.
The extensive repairs required on this project were completed on time in April 1998 and within the budget of approximately $2.5 million U.S.