Swords WwTW


An upgrade and expansion of the Swords Wastewater Treatment Plant will see treatment capacity rise from a population equivalent of 60,000 to 90,000 on completion. This initial capacity has placed a constraint on development in the area in recent years and the expansion is necessary in order for any future local planning permission to be granted.

Coupled with this constraint is the need to protect the Malahide Estuary Special Area of Conservation (SAC) and the Broadmeadow Estuary Special Protection Area (SPA) into which effluent from the plant at Swords discharges. ByrneLooby are responsible for the detailed design, procurement and construction supervision of the expansion.

A challenge on this project was to achieve a high water discharge effluent for both the expansion and the existing plant, due to the sensitive nature of the receiving waters. This was achieved using tertiary treatment by filtration, and disinfection using ultra-violet treatment.

Another challenge was the need for the existing plant to remain operational during the works. This existing plant is operated by the client with the expansion works being constructed by an external contractor. The upgrade involved working within the existing plant in many areas and a high level of interface between the plant operator and the contractor was required. This required the development and implementation of detailed management procedures.

A major concern of the client was to address odour issues arising from the plant’s close proximity to the Swords community. ByrneLooby worked to alleviate the client’s concerns by using expert sub-consultants to model the odour impact and identify required mitigation measures. These included ensuring that all new processes were fully enclosed with odour treatment provided on all extracts.

The client was also concerned with ensuring high quality plant and equipment was used. These concerns were addressed by ensuring detailed and complete specifications for all the plant were prepared which only the highest quality plant would meet.


"Working on the Swords Wastewater Treatment Plant project has exposed me to new technologies and innovation aspects of the project.  This is invaluable to me now and I will be able to take the lead on future similar projects."

Ed, Senior Project Engineer



Project Photos