IT IS being hailed as a landmark agreement that could see Hampshire claiming a world first.

Bosses behind plans for a huge development on the shores of Southampton Water have unveiled proposals to ensure it has smart water systems built in from the outset.

It follows talks between Southern Water and Fawley Waterside, which wants to transform the former Fawley Power Station site.

As reported in the Daily Echo, Fawley Waterside is working on a raft of proposals for the site including 1,500 homes and a luxury marina, plus schools, shops and restaurants.

If the scheme is given planning permission the huge site will be redeveloped over a 20-year period.

Under the agreement with Southern Water, sustainable water and wastewater treatment systems will be built as part of the scheme's "intelligent infrastructure".

Proposals include an onsite wastewater treatment works, separated drinking and toilet-flushing water, smart water meters for each property and an integrated drainage system which will retain rainwater run-off.

The water-saving scheme has been welcomed by Aldred Drummond, chief executive of Fawley Waterside.

He said: “Sustainability and water resource management is at the forefront of the Fawley Waterside project, improving efficiency and reducing resident’s costs where possible.

"We are keen to demonstrate to the whole of the UK what a modern water efficient development can achieve.”

Ian McAulay, chief executive of Southern Water, added: “We are delighted by the positive attitude and understanding of our sustainability plans and goals shown by Fawley Waterside's leadership team.

"This Memorandum of Understanding is a vital step in delivering the first example of a community designed with water efficiency in mind.”

Ben Earl, water efficiency manager at Southern Water, said: "We have set hugely ambitious targets for this exciting development.

"This is part of our UK-leading campaign called Target 100*, which aims to help our customers use an average of 100 litres of water per person, per day by 2040.

“Reaching these ambitious targets simply can't be done without new innovations and incentives for our customers – which is why we are thrilled to be working with Fawley Waterside to include features which will make the target not just possible but easily reachable.”

A planning application to redevelop the site is likely to be submitted in the next few months.

As reported, a glass-sided eatery at the top of the power station's 650ft chimney has been discussed but will not form part of the initial proposal.