Water security front and centre in Council Budget

Date published: 23 June 2021

Council’s 2021/22 Budget includes a $177 million investment in water infrastructure and services, continuing Council’s strong focus on the city’s water security.

Mayor Jenny Hill said Council was committed to ensuring Townsville continues to have a safe, reliable, secure and healthy water supply now and into the future.

“With a growing population and ageing infrastructure, Council has committed to making a generational investment into the water infrastructure our city needs,” Cr Hill said.

“The 2021/22 Budget provides funding to continue the implementation of our integrated water strategy, which includes the renewal of the pipeline between Ross River Dam and the Douglas Water Treatment Plant and enhancements to the treatment plant itself.

“The renewal of the pipe between the dam and the treatment plant is a $20 million investment, while the installation of two new clarifiers at the Douglas Water Treatment Plant will cost $27 million, of which $4 million was expended in 2020/21.

“A new PAC dosing system will also be installed at the Douglas facility at a cost of $8.5 million. The system will absorb dissolved organic matter and algal toxins from the raw water and improve taste and odour.”

Townsville Water and Waste Committee chairperson Russ Cook said the Budget also included a considerable investment in the ongoing renewal of our underground water infrastructure.

“Our underground water infrastructure moves clean and healthy water to homes and businesses, so it’s essential we continue to invest in new and upgraded pipes and water mains,” Cr Cook said.

“The 2021/22 Budget includes a $5.1 million contribution from Council towards the cost of building a new low-level water reservoir and inlet/outlet pipe at Elliot Springs.

“There is also $9.1 million to replace sections of the water main along Charters Towers Road and $5 million to replace the pipeline from the Douglas Water Treatment Plant under the Ross River, supplying water to properties on the northern side of the river.

“$5.5 million will go toward the replacement of various small water pipes across the city, the replacement of the Stagpole Street water main at a cost of $2.5 million and $1.5 million to replace water meters that are approaching the end of their operational life.”

Council continues to work with the Queensland Government and the Department of Defence on the duplication of the pipeline between the Ross River Dam and Douglas Water Treatment Plant.

Council has fast-tracked the design and land access arrangements to enable the duplication of the pipeline between the dam and treatment plant as soon as possible.

Tenders for the construction of the duplicate pipeline are expected to be released later in the year.

Council is currently developing the concept into a full detailed design package, including a more accurate cost estimate. The cost of the duplication is currently estimated to be around $45 million.