Melbourne Water is planning to build a transformational new sewerage system that is set to benefit residents and businesses in Melbourne’s west.

The Maribyrnong River Main (MRM) to North Western Sewer Connection Project will provide a world-class sewerage system to manage future flows by increasing the capacity of the system, and improving the transfer of wastewater from the area. 

The MRM sewer – which follows the Maribyrnong River from Thompson Street Reserve in Avondale Heights to Epsom Road in Ascot Vale – is one of the main sewers in Melbourne Water’s network.  

Melbourne Water’s General Manager of Major Program Delivery, Eamonn Kelly, said the large-scale sewer augmentation will be delivered using state-of–the-art construction technologies to limit the impact on local communities.

“The new 1.2km gravity sewer will be built to divert sewage flows from the MRM Sewer into the larger North Western Sewer in Maidstone, which transports wastewater to the Western Treatment Plant,” Mr Kelly said.

“It will have capacity to transport about 24 million litres of sewage each day from 36,000 properties in Essendon West, Airport West, Tullamarine – including Melbourne Airport – Avondale Heights, Keilor East, Taylors Lakes and Sydenham to where it’s treated at the Western Treatment Plant.

“With the west being a big urban growth corridor, there is a real need for this capacity-building and innovative sewer augmentation. 

“We’re also working closely with Maribyrnong and Moonee Valley City Councils to develop opportunities to deliver long-term benefits for the Maribyrnong River and for the community.”

Part of that plan aims to see a section of land next to the Maribyrnong River, which is currently inaccessible, opened up for the community to enjoy once the new sewer has been built. 

Extensive weeds will be removed throughout the reserve and native grasses, trees and shrubs will be planted in their place.

A new pipe bridge will be built over the Maribyrnong River to cater for active transport connection, and a 300m shared path will be created to join up to existing shared paths on either side of the river. 

This will create a key link in the western active transport corridor and enable continuous public access along the river.

Geotechnical investigations, cultural heritage assessments, and flora and fauna surveys have been completed and will be used to inform the detailed design.

Construction on the two-year project is slated to start in late 2021.

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