Sydney Water is investing a record $2.2 billion over the 2016-2020 cycle to upgrade and expand its water and wastewater infrastructure.

Kevin Young, Managing Director at Sydney Water said, “Sydney Water’s infrastructure projects provide the foundation and investment to allow for the growth of Sydney.

“We are helping to fulfil the dream for thousands of extra families to own a home in Sydney, one of the world’s most liveable cities.

“A key driver for the investment program is to deliver quality services to Sydney Water customers while reducing customer bills, which we have been able to deliver in real terms by around $100 a year.

“The next two years of the infrastructure program includes some significant growth projects to support expansion in the North West and South West growth areas of Sydney.”

The projects

Lower South Creek in Sydney’s South West is a $300 million program that will provide new and upgraded wastewater infrastructure to support an additional half million people in Sydney’s West by 2040, providing significant improvements to the quality, capacity and reliability of the wastewater system in the area.

The Lower South Creek Treatment Program will be managed by the WSP Parsons Brinckerhoff and UGL Limited joint venture on behalf of Sydney Water.

The Lower South Creek project includes amplified wastewater treatment facilities at Riverstone Wastewater Treatment Plant and St Mary’s Water Recycling Plant, and a new 12km pipeline from St Marys to the Quakers Hill Water Recycling Plant, which will be completed by December 2018.

A new biological nutrient removal plant at the Quakers Hill Water Recycling Plant will be completed in December 2019.

Planning for growth

Sydney Water plans to invest around $800 million in catering for growth across greater Sydney, with most of that investment to take place in Sydney’s North West and South West. This includes not only investment in the network, but also upgrades to existing facilities such as wastewater treatment plants.

North Western Sydney

Sydney Water is planning for the next stages of growth in western precincts of the North West Priority Growth Area, including Marsden Park, Marsden Park Industrial, Marsden Park North and Schofields West.

While this project is still in the early stages of planning, this represents a long term investment of more than $130 million, and will provide water and wastewater services for around 20,000 new dwellings.

South Western Sydney

In the South West at Oran Park, the construction of a $27 million wastewater pumping station and the installation of around eight kilometres of wastewater pipelines will allow for 7,000 new homes to be built in the area.

This is in addition to the Sydney Water wastewater projects just completed in nearby Leppington and Austral, allowing a further 12,000 new dwellings in the area to be constructed.

The project at Austral involved the construction of a new wastewater pumping station and 4.2km pipelines at a cost of $19 million. Two wastewater pumping stations and 12km of pipeline were built at Leppington at a cost of $45 million.

Investing in the existing network

As well as delivering projects that will cater for growth, Sydney Water will invest in existing infrastructure to ensure the continued reliability of the water and wastewater system.

Major upgrades planned include:

  • A $100 million program to upgrade the Northern Suburbs Ocean Outfall Sewer network, which collects about 25 per cent of the Sydney Basin’s wastewater and runs from Blacktown to North Head. The work will include de-silting and repairs to this critical pipeline between West Ryde and North Head
  • Upgrading the biosolids stream at North Head Wastewater Treatment Plant, increasing capacity to improve the quality of the biosolids, manage odour and ensure the plant can continue to meet growth in the catchment
  • Separating Sydney’s last remaining combined stormwater/wastewater system. The $45 million Woolloomooloo Separation Project aims to help reduce the number of wet weather wastewater overflows to Woolloomooloo Bay.

The project will involve construction of 4.2km of new wastewater pipes, 650m of new stormwater pipes and the connection of 220 properties. Construction will start in 2017 and take approximately two years to finish

Opportunities for contractors and suppliers

The program roll out over the next four years and will provide significant opportunities for contractors and suppliers in the wastewater and water sectors.

Mark Simister, Delivery Manager at Sydney Water, said, “Sydney Water is driving better customer outcomes by working more collaboratively and innovatively with suppliers and contractors to reduce time and cost, while ensuring quality delivery.

“We have adopted a new approach to procure planning, design and specialist services – using the Delivery Partner model. We’re looking forward to partnering with the best of industry to deliver these important infrastructure projects to drive the growth of our city.

“Sydney Water is the first water utility in Australia to use this innovative delivery model to deliver best outcomes for customers and government.

“The Delivery Partner model is a highly collaborative performance-based approach, where the delivery partner takes accountability for the overall program outcomes and manages contractors, while Sydney Water remains principal for those contracts.

“Using the Delivery Partner model for a program of works, Sydney Water is able to realise cost efficiencies through packaging of works, improved supply chain integration and uniform procurement of materials and construction contracts.

“We can now cater for accelerated mobilisation, team integration and delivery implementation. We have also designed the model to be agile enough to take advantage of changing technical priorities and customer needs, along with cost and scheduling opportunities.

“The model will benefit our customers by providing better access to industry expertise, innovation and management resources, and the new approach allows us to better manage multiple concurrent projects for professional services, supply and construction.

“We conducted market sounding in August 2016 to ensure a fair and diligent process, which secures the best outcome for the projects and for our customers.”

Sydney is entering a period of rapid housing growth, and Kevin Young summed the situation up best when he said “Without the investment in infrastructure by Sydney Water, this growth is not possible”.

Lauren brings a fresh approach to content. While she’s previously written for publications as diverse as Australian Geographic, The Border Watch and Girlfriend, she’s found her true passion in her current role as an editor in the world of energy and infrastructure trade magazines.

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