A key section of the Melbourne Water Williamstown Main Sewer Project is almost complete and 40 newly donated trees will soon be planted around Williamstown, Newport and Spotswood to enhance the amenity of the area.

Since March 2018, the trees have provided a pleasing backdrop to the works on Ferguson Street, replacing traditional worksite hoarding.

Melbourne Water has been working with Hobsons Bay City Council on the Williamstown Main Sewer Rehabilitation Project since mid-2016.

This early engagement enabled the project team to develop innovative ideas to help reduce the visual impact of the project on local businesses and the community.

Melbourne Water Project Manager Jim O’Neil said the use of the trees was one way Melbourne Water was working collaboratively to deliver better outcomes on major projects.

“The Williamstown Main Sewer provides reliable sewage services for approximately 7600 homes and businesses in Williamstown, Newport and Spotswood,” Mr O’Neil said.

“We wanted to create a safe and appealing space in Ferguson Street while we undertook these necessary works on this important asset.

“The project team worked hand-in-hand with council to develop a space that would draw people to the area while works were being carried out, dramatically improving what would otherwise be a standard work compound.

“This project clearly demonstrates what can be achieved when the community is put at the heart of the decision-making process.”

Hobsons Bay Mayor, Councillor Angela Altair, said the trees would soon be planted in the local area.

“We are very grateful to Melbourne Water for selecting these trees to our requirements so they can easily be replanted once the sewer works are complete,” Ms Altair said.

Important information about the Williamstown Sewer works:

  • Built over 100 years ago, the Williamstown Main sewer is a single brick pipeline which runs for 4.4km
  • Rehabilitating the sewer requires works to be undertaken from Craig Street, Spotswood (near Scienceworks) to Pasco Street, Williamstown (near Williamstown Beach Station) at a cost of around $22 million
  • Sewer relining reduces community impacts and lowers costs, when compared with traditional sewer replacement, which would involve excavating the old pipe
  • The overall Williamstown project is expected to be completed by mid-2018 

Charlotte Pordage is Editor of Utility magazine, a position she has held since November 2018. She joined the team as an Associate Editor in October 2017, after sharpening her writing and editing skills across a range of print and digital publications. Charlotte graduated from Royal Holloway, University of London, in 2011 with joint honours in English and Latin. When she's not putting together Australia's only dedicated utility magazine, she can usually be found riding her horse or curled up with a good book.

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