The plan to put in a sewer system and treatment plant for the metro area has been enriched by some $93 million, even though the project has yet to break ground.
The plan to stop dumping all of the Central Valley’s sewage into the rivers and eventually the Pacific Ocean was announced formally during the administration of Abel Pacheco. The Japanese government agreed to put up $150 million.
During the administration of Óscar Arias Sánchez the legislative assembly agreed to accept the Japanese loan.
Now the Inter-American Development Bank reported that it will add a $73 million, 25-year loan to the project and that the Spanish government will donate $20 million.
The plan calls for a sewage treatment plant in Escazú downhill from the central canton as well as improvements and expansion of the existing sewer lines.
Most tourists do not know that all of the Central Valley sewage flows into rivers and streams and
then into the Río Grande de Tárcoles. From there it flows into the Gulf of Nicoya. Then-president Pacheco once joked that the flow contributes to the well being of the Tárcoles crocodiles.
The project appears stalled because Costa Rica has agreed to put up $77 million for the project. The project also will provide $26 million for the construction and rehabilitation of rural water systems, according to the development bank. The entire project is being supervised by the Instituto Costarricense de Acueductos y Alcantarillados, the national water company.
The development bank said that $274 million will be devoted to improving and extending the sewer network in the metro area, including 160 kms of lines in the rios María Aguilar and Tiribi watersheds. The plan also calls for a tunnel to the Escazú plant.
Some $26 million will provide systems for 112 rural communities and 500 small sewage systems for those who now use pit latrines, said the bank.
Some $14 million will pay for construction and rehabilitation of 73 kms of water lines and 15 kms of sewers at 10 low-income areas around San José, according to the bank.