A 10-year plan adopted by council on Tuesday 30 June 2020 to improve Greater Geelong’s stormwater systems will see enhanced green public spaces, drinking water preserved, reduced flooding and less stormwater pollution.
The Stormwater Services Strategy 2020-2030 sets out a clear path to better manage and upgrade our network of pipes, open drains, flood levees, wetlands and other assets. If these were laid end-on-end, the network would stretch from Geelong to Alice Springs.
The blueprint outlines 15 objectives aimed at guiding the delivery of services and responding to climate change, population growth, ageing assets and limited funding, including:
- use harvested stormwater on parks, gardens and streets to reduce demand on drinking water
- minimise flood disruption to roads, pathways, places and services
- protect the health of bays and waterways from the impacts of litter and pollution and
- implement stormwater systems that can adapt to future needs like population growth.
The Northern Geelong Green Corridor Project, Waterproofing Urban Geelong Project, Lake Connewarre Protection Project and Bellarine Sustainable Water Project have been identified as priority projects that will bridge gaps in stormwater services.
Stakeholders and the broader community were heavily consulted about the draft strategy over three months through workshops, briefings and online engagement. Feedback was highly supportive of the strategy and its approach, with 76 per cent believing the objectives were ‘very important’.
Funding models and state and federal funding for the flagship projects will be investigated in partnership with key stakeholders.
Councillor Stephanie Asher - Mayor
Stormwater management is more than just maintaining pipes and drains. This proactive strategy is forward-thinking, displays leadership and sets out ‘clever and creative’ actions that benefit residents, enhance the environment and tackle the effects of climate change in a sustainable and efficient way.
Thanks to everyone who gave feedback on the strategy. The community will again be consulted as part of its implementation.
Councillor Jim Mason
The effects of climate change, population growth, a rapidly growing economy and higher rainfall intensity events present us with opportunities to be smarter in the way we manage stormwater within the network, which is worth more than $600 million. This includes easing pressure on our drinking water supplies by using more harvested stormwater wisely in our parks and gardens, which the community has been calling for.
This is a very important and environmentally sensitive strategy, that fits the region’s ‘clever and creative’ criteria perfectly. The enhancement of our stormwater assets will enormously benefit liveability and our natural environment.