The State Government has awarded a $4.9 million contract for the construction of the new weir at Bandy Creek Boat Harbour in Esperance.
Western Australian company Italia Stone Group (Pty Ltd) will begin work on the nine-month project in July, which will include 10,000 tonnes of earthworks and rockworks and see 400 tonnes of concrete poured.
The contract award follows detailed design and consultation to ensure the project meets technical requirements and community expectations.
After a significant flood event in 2007, the weir was reconstructed, and in February 2017, the current structure was overtopped by floodwater causing significant damage including erosion of its foundation and a collapse at the southern end.
The new weir will be less susceptible to future damage and will be located 50 metres upstream of the old weir.
It also allows tidal flushing and fish movement between the creek and harbour to continue, and there will be no impact on the water level or quality of the Ramsar protected wetlands upstream.
The construction of the weir is expected to create 41 WA jobs, of which 20 are anticipated to be regional. Three apprentices will also be employed during the project.
Biennial maintenance dredging has commenced at the harbour and will see 50,000 cubic metres of sand removed by August allowing continued safe navigation of the entrance.
The majority of funding for the project will come from insurance. People wanting more information or a copy of the design can visit http://www.transport.wa.gov.au/bandycreekweir
As stated by Transport Minister Rita Saffioti:
“The Department of Transport has invested significant expertise in the development of the weir design and the local community expressed strong support for the project during earlier consultation.
“The design of the new weir will reduce sediment deposition from the creek in the boat harbour and has other community benefits including elevated access across the waterway for pedestrians, emergency and service vehicles.
“The $4.9 million contract for the project will also result in local employment opportunities and a financial boost for the local economy with 20 local jobs and apprenticeships.”
As stated by Agricultural Region MLC Darren West:
“The design, location and alignment of the new weir will reduce the chance of future damage to the structure.
“It will be positioned 50 metres upstream of the old weir, and its design will increase the capacity of the structure to handle flood events and make it more resilient.
“I thank the Minister for this considerable State Government investment in Esperance.”
As stated by Agricultural Region MLC Laurie Graham:
“The damage to the original weir was unfortunate for the local community but we are pleased to be getting on with building a stronger structure that will last decades.
“It’s positive to see there will be a boost to the Esperance economy in terms of jobs.
“The new structure will include an elevated road platform for pedestrians, cyclists, emergency and service vehicles. The road platform will be approximately one metre higher than the
existing weir, with a gap between the top of the weir and the platform.”