Work will begin on Havant Thicket Reservoir this September, subject to Portsmouth Water receiving final permission to start the project.
The scheme has been in the making for many years, and it had previously attracted objections from residents who were concerned about the loss of habitat and wildlife.
However, Portsmouth Water is now ready to start preparatory work on site as soon as final permission has been granted.
This is expected to happen in September, with work commencing straight away. The first stage of work is planned to take place in the autumn in order to avoid the bird nesting season.
Bob Taylor, chief executive officer, Portsmouth Water, said: ‘This will be a landmark moment for the Havant Thicket Reservoir project. Many years of planning and a great deal of research has gone into this project and I am delighted that work should soon be underway.
‘I do appreciate that there is likely to be some noise and disruption to local communities during this time and I would like to thank residents in advance for your patience. We are taking every measure possible to minimise disruption. We will also make sure that local roadways are checked regularly for dirt and debris and are cleaned promptly, as required.
‘If you have any comments or concerns about the scheme, I invite you to get in touch. We are always open to ideas and suggestions and would be very pleased to hear from you.’
Initial work will involve installing a site compound near to the Swanmore Road entrance. This is planned to start in September, subject to the formal granting of planning permission.
Work to clear the site is then expected to begin at the end of September. Due to environmental and seasonal constraints, the tree harvesting activities be completed by the end of October.
The firm said that significant measures will be taken to ensure wildlife is not harmed and that animals are not present during construction works. This includes sending specialist climbers up trees to ensure they are free of wildlife.
Ecologists will be on site when the clearance work takes place and only ecologists with appropriate licences will be involved.
For health and safety reasons, areas of the site will be closed to the public during this time. Public footpaths and bridleways will remain open where it is safe to do so. Some diversions will be in place in order to avoid areas where work is being carried out.
For more go to portsmouthwater.co.uk/new-reservoir or call 023 9249 9888.