Topic: Sewer Gas Vent (1930s)

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Sewer Gas Vent

In 1927 the New Plymouth Borough engineer, Mr William Alfred Clarence Clarke, designed a comprehensive sewerage scheme to replace an antiquated system that had been operational since 1904. 

The system comprised 72km of gravity fed tunnels that led to two holding tanks below Eliot Street. Eventually the effluent (by now mainly liquid) was discharged straight into the sea via an outlet pipe at the end of Eliot Street. 

The system was completed in 1933 at a cost of $317,000 and was future-proofed for a population of 60,000 - at the time New Plymouth's population was just 16,000. The system operated until the 1980s when the new Carrousel treatment plant was built in the Waiwhakaiho Valley. 

The pole above, located at the intersection of Upjohn Street, Tarahua Street and Coronation Avenue, was one of a number of sewer vents installed to releases gases from the underground tunnel system. 

Another vent is located on Clemow Road and there may be others still dotted around the city.

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Sewer Gas Vent (1930s)


City:New Plymouth