T Park sets the bar high with advanced desalination plant

Veolia chief executive Antoine Frerot hailed "the sewage stations of the future" on opening T Park in Hong Kong, the world’s largest sewage treatment plant, on 26 May.

The plant has capacity to treat waste from the city’s entire population of 7.2 million people, taking sludge from 11 sewage treatment works and reducing its volume by 90 per cent to save on landfill.

An advanced desalination plant purifies sea water drawn from nearby Shenzhen Bay, to provide potable and process water, and rainwater is collected for non-potable use. The facility achieves zero effluence discharge by using a compact wastewater treatment system that collects, treats and reuses all wastewater on the site, for irrigation, flushing and cleaning.

T Park was designed by French architect Claude Vasconi to blend into Hong Kong’s Shenzhen Bay with a wave-like form inspired by the surrounding sea and hills. It currently processes 1,200 tonnes of sludge per day, and has capacity to handle the estimated 2,000 tonnes that Hong Kong will produce by 2030.

“The plant is now a benchmark in the water segment and illustrates the sewage stations of the future. The site combines urban ecology and lifestyle with a refined look incorporating the protection of the environment and intense urban development,” said Frerot.

T Park uses sunlight, natural ventilation and green roofs to minimise energy consumption, and when its two turbines run at full capacity, they can generate surplus electricity of 2 MW that can be exported to power up to 4,000 households.

The seven hectare site was extensively landscaped to include a variety of local plant species and a wetland habitat for birds, it hosts a recreational and educational centre for the public, a theatre, cafe, spa, and terrace overlooking the bay.