Better water pressure not just a pipe dream

SHOALHAVEN City Council will this week start on the first of a multi-million dollar four-year program to replace a number of water mains in the city.

Shoalhaven Water has identified 276 reticulation water main sites in the city that will be upgraded over the rolling program.

The program will ensure water main assets continue to operate effectively into the future.

A panel of 10 contractors has been appointed to undertake the replacement program, which will upgrade a total of 41km of reticulation mains. 

At its ordinary meeting on September 24 last year, council resolved to appoint a panel of construction contractors for the works. 

Council will spend around $1.5 million a year for each of the four years on the program and will update the old mains to at least 100mm in diameter.

Acting Shoalhaven Water director Rob Horner said the work was part of council’s asset management program.

“The program will update older, smaller sized water mains to at least 100mm in diameter,” Mr Horner said.

“The smaller mains have been causing problems with water pressure and quality, hence the upgrade.”

The work will be undertaken by contractors using a mixture of direction drillers and trenchless technology as well as conventional pipe-laying with trenching.

Work is due to start in the Culburra Beach, Nowra and Berry areas.

Shoalhaven Water has also reported the area’s infrastructure is coping well with the increased population over the holidays.

Despite the area’s population trebling from around 90,000 to more than 320,000, water supplies in Tallowa Dam remain at almost capacity levels.

Mr Horner said Tallowa Dam was at 99 per cent capacity, with water just half a metre below the overflow level.

“At the moment we are using around 46 megalitres of water a day, which is right on target with consumption for this time of the year,” he said.

“Our usual consumption is around 28 megalitres a day, but of course that increases during the holiday period.

“Rainfall in the upper catchment means there is around 560 megalitres flowing into the dam and we are requisitioning around 30 megalitres a day.

“There are also good flows in the Shoalhaven River.

“Our infrastructure is coping well with the extra demands being placed on it.”

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