SA Water will replace around 59m of water main under Nicolle Road in Clarendon, including the Onkaparinga crossing, to reduce the impact of water main breaks on its customers and the area’s road users.

The upgrade is part of an ongoing program that will see $137 million invested to replace around 375km of water mains across South Australia between 2016 and 2020.

SA Water’s General Manager of Asset Operations and Delivery, Mark Gobbie, said this section of pipe was prioritised for replacement after a recent break.

“Water main incidents are typically triggered by environmental factors like weather and soil movement, so we can’t completely stop them from happening, but we’re fully committed to reducing their incidence and impact on our customers,” Mr Gobbie said.

“The new pipe will be made of stainless steel and ductile iron, because it has to be strong enough to cross over the Onkaparinga River, above the ground.

“We’ll be using traditional trenching techniques to lay the new main around the river crossing, then bolting the remaining pipe to the footbridge, to take it securely over the river.”

Both the old and new water mains have an expected lifespan of 100 years. More than half of SA Water’s 27,000km network of pipes are under 50 years old, which is relatively young by urban water industry standards.

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