Greater Western Water crews sliplining cardigan street

Greater Western Water (GWW) has completed an upgrade to replace a 146-year-old water main in Melbourne. 

GWW crews installed a new 3.5km water main along Victoria Street, from North Melbourne to Carlton, as well as parts of Rathdowne Street and Howard Street, to help future-proof Melbourne’s water supply. 

GWW General Manager of Growth and Infrastructure, Ian Burton, said that prior to the upgrade water was supplied to customers by a smaller cast-iron main built in 1878.  

“The new main has increased capacity and will provide safe and reliable drinking water to inner-city customers for decades to come. As work took place along a major city arterial road, construction was delivered in carefully planned stages to minimise disruption and maximise safety. 

“With a large section of works carried out at night, we want to thank the community for their patience and understanding during construction. It was important to work closely with stakeholders, local businesses and residents to understand different needs and keep everyone updated as work progressed – and we appreciate the feedback we received while we carried out this essential network upgrade,” Mr Burton said.  

The old water main was replaced using a combination of slip-lining and lift-and-relay methods. Slip-lining technology is a method that inserts the new pipeline inside the existing water main to limit disruption to local traffic and businesses.   

In built-up areas where space was limited, the lift-and-relay method was used. This involved completely removing the old pipe first and replacing it with the new pipe.  

The upgrade was delivered in partnership with Jaydo Construction. 

Featured image: Slip-lining used to replace the water main on Cardigan Street. Courtesy of Greater Western Water. 

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