Plans to improve the reliability of Gloucester’s water supply network are set to take a significant step forward, with MidCoast Council expected to appoint a contractor to undertake the construction phase of the project at the 24 March Council meeting.
The project will ensure consistent water quality and pressure is supplied throughout the network and replace infrastructure that has deteriorated over time.
“The construction of a seven megalitre reservoir and a second small elevated reservoir will largely eliminate the current reliance on pressure booster pump stations. These boosters cause continuous pressure fluctuations in town and fail completely during power outages,” said Council’s Director of Infrastructure and Engineering Services, Rob Scott.
The new reservoirs will be built at Council’s existing Cemetery Road site and will be connected to the water treatment plant via a pipeline that will be constructed from the showground. A gravity water main will also be constructed from the Cemetery Road site to the industrial area to address ongoing issues with water pressure in that part of town. Several other mains will also be upgraded throughout the network, allowing for old infrastructure to be decommissioned.
Mr Scott said the additional storage capacity provided by the new reservoirs would also prove beneficial during wet weather events, as they would reduce the need to draw from the Barrington River during times of high turbidity.
“This will greatly reduce the risk to the drinking water system and make it a lot easier for our operators to guarantee the treated water quality.”
It is anticipated the project will take around 12 months, with construction expected to begin in June. An accurate timeframe will be provided to the community once a contractor has been appointed.
Council is also committed to improving Gloucester’s water security in the long term, however Mr Scott said this would be an expensive undertaking that would require considerable investigation and extensive community consultation.
“In the meantime, upgrading Gloucester’s existing infrastructure will go a long way towards improving the reliability of the town’s water supply.”