Say 'hi' to Piper at open day

Photo of Piper the tunnel boring machine
The Warkworth to Snells Beach wastewater pipeline project is entering its Tunnel Boring Machine (TBM) phase. To celebrate, we’re hosting an open day for the community to see and perhaps get a selfie with Piper the TBM before she dives headfirst underground, reaching depths varying between 5 and 61 metres to construct the 5km wastewater pipeline between the Snells Beach Wastewater Treatment Plant and Lucy Moore Park Wastewater Pump Station.

Apart from meeting Piper, people will get the opportunity to learn more about the work we have going on in the area as well as enjoy a free barista-made coffee and sausage sizzle.

The free event will be held at Dawson Road Reserve, next to Snells Beach Primary School, on Wednesday, June 14, from 10am to 2pm.
Photo of Piper the tunnel boring machine's cutterface
Up close and personal with Piper's cutterface

The Warkworth to Snells Beach pipeline is one of the key infrastructure projects in our $300m+ investment programme to support growth as well as improve environmental outcomes in Auckland’s Northeast region, says senior project manager Dirk du Plessis.

“This development – alongside the Lucy Moore Wastewater Pump Station and Snells Wastewater Treatment Plant - will play a key role in sustaining regional development, population growth and safeguarding the environment.

“We’re proud of the progress that has been made, and to be able to host a community event where the community can come out to the site to learn how we got here and where we are going is incredibly rewarding.”
Du Plessis adds that Piper – named Starlight Piper by pupils at Snells Beach School back in 2020 – has been steadily drilling tunnels in the Snells Beach-Algies Bay area for the last three years under the watchful eyes of our contractor McConnell Dowell.

“Piper’s most recent job is drilling a new wastewater pipe between Warkworth to the new Snells-Algies Wastewater Treatment Plant – which is on track to be completed by late 2024.

“This time around, we expect Piper to roughly take 16 months to complete her journey as she drills and pulls the pipeline’s 423 steel pipes, weighing around 7.5 ton each.

“Overall, the project is on track to be completed in early 2025.”