Mekorot selects group of companies to design Israel's future water systems

The projects include the development of Israel’s domestic water sector as well as the design of how to supply water to neighboring countries, such as Jordan.

A worker at the Eshkol Water Filtration Plant in Northern Israel. The central filtration plant at the Eshkol site in Israel is the fourth largest plant in the world and the first of its kind in the country. It was constructed in June 2007.  (photo credit: MOSHE SHAI/FLASH90)
A worker at the Eshkol Water Filtration Plant in Northern Israel. The central filtration plant at the Eshkol site in Israel is the fourth largest plant in the world and the first of its kind in the country. It was constructed in June 2007.
(photo credit: MOSHE SHAI/FLASH90)

Mekorot, Israel’s national water company, has selected the Israeli and foreign companies that will be tasked with designing the country’s water sector for the coming decade.

The projects include the development of Israel’s domestic water sector as well as the design of how to supply water to neighboring countries, such as Jordan.

Mekorot’s work plan for the coming years includes connecting new desalination facilities in Israel’s North and center and connecting the Western Galilee to the National Water Carrier. It also includes connecting the Arava in the South to seawater desalination facilities.

To facilitate the surge in projects, Mekorot decided a year ago to refresh the database of planning entities that it uses. This came as annual projects almost doubled from about NIS 800 million a year to NIS 1.5 billion.

In December 2020, Mekorot published a tender to receive proposals from Israeli and foreign planning companies. The company’s tenders committee examined the proposals with an emphasis on the candidates’ experience, size, range of engineering experience and command of advanced engineering and design methods.

 Mekorot Chairman Yitzhak Aharonovich. (credit: MEKOROT) Mekorot Chairman Yitzhak Aharonovich. (credit: MEKOROT)

The companies that won the tender include Germany’s CDM Consult GmbH together with Israel’s Ecolog Engineering Ltd.; Spain’s Intecsa-Inarsa SA with Israel’s Marshall Engineering Ltd.; Italy’s Studio Altieri SpA with Israel’s Baran Group Ltd.; Britain’s Bechtel Corporation with Israel’s S. Gilboa Engineers Ltd.; the US-based HDR Inc. with Israel’s Magelan Planning and Engineering Consulting Ltd. and Y. Shifris Consulting Engineers Ltd.; and Spain’s Typsa Group SA with Israel’s Tahal Consulting Engineers Ltd.

According to Mekorot’s estimates, the selected groups will be responsible for a series of design processes totaling approximately NIS 500 million over the next five years, including engineering and statutory design of water production, treatment and distribution systems and facilities.

“The new planning concept will enable the company to streamline, lower project costs and implement new work methods that are routinely used in advanced Western countries,” explained Mekorot Board of Directors chairman Yitzhak Aharonovich.

“The planning revolution will enable the creation of engineering reserves for the needs of the economy,” added Mekorot VP of Development and Customers Avi Malul. “The use of advanced technologies will result in the building of efficient and reliable water infrastructures and optimize budget use.”