Tunnelling works have begun on William Street in Melbourne’s CBD as part of the $80 million Lonsdale Street Sewer Upgrade project. 

A tunnel boring machine (TBM) will be used to help install a new sewer. It has been lowered into a 23m deep shaft on William Street and will undertake tunnelling works to construct the 900m long sewer main under Lonsdale Street, between Elizabeth Street and Spencer Street. 

The 6.3m long, 16.3T TBM will first excavate from William Street to Elizabeth Street, and will then return to the William Street shaft to complete excavation works towards Spencer Street. 

City West Water Acting Managing Director, Maree Lang, said the Lonsdale Street Sewer Upgrade was part of an $80 million capital improvement program to upgrade Melbourne CBD’s sewer system. 

“The current CBD sewer network is approximately 120 years old and is nearing full capacity,” Ms Lang said. 

“The upgrade is vital to support Melbourne’s anticipated growth and in ensuring reliability of sewerage services for everyone who lives, works and visits our city for generations to come.

“After several months of planning, preparation and working closely with stakeholders for the Lonsdale Street sewer works, we are very pleased that tunnel boring is now underway.” 

Expected to be completed by the end of 2020, the Lonsdale Street Sewer Upgrade will connect with the Spencer Street Upgrade, which was completed in December 2018. 

Together these projects form part of City West Water’s $80 million capital improvement program to help secure wastewater services for people living and working in Melbourne CBD.

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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