Queensland Urban Utilities is preparing a large tunnel borer to break rock on a new $55 million sewer project in Brisbane.

The borer will pave the way for 4.25km of new pipe from Wecker Rd, Mansfield to Cadogan St, Carindale.

Queensland Urban Utilities spokesperson, Michelle Cull, said the project was a feat of engineering, with the borer reaching depths of almost 50m below the surface.

“The machine, which was recently shipped from Germany, will be craned into the access shaft in three parts,” Ms Cull said.

“Once assembled, it’s almost 14m long, 1.8m in diameter and weighs more than 45 tonnes – the equivalent of six elephants.

“It will then be operated via computer, making the work much safer and less disruptive than traditional trenching.”

Queensland Urban Utilities has involved the local community to give the sewerage project a lasting splash of colour.

The Easts Mt Gravatt Junior Rugby League Club held a competition, which resulted in the borer being named ‘Sewey’ and decorated with bright colours and love hearts – the winning design courtesy of 10-year-old Caitlin Gamble.

In addition, five sewer maintenance holes off Wecker Rd have been transformed into colourful works of art with the help of Urban Smart Projects.

Local Councillor and Deputy Mayor, Adrian Schrinner, said a local artist had worked with students from Citipointe Christian College to come up with designs.

“Our sewerage system is the cornerstone of good public health and a lot of work goes on behind the scenes to keep toilets flushing and showers running.

“This upgrade will cater for future growth in the catchment for at least the next 50 years.”

Works are expected to be completed by the end of 2018, weather permitting. 

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