WSUD bus tours – the best way to roll on water!

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As Prince Charles famously said back in 1954, “I’d rather go by bus”!

And by bus the first Water Sensitive Urban Design tour for Perth’s South-eastern Metropolitan region did go!  New WAter Ways hosted the first water sensitive urban design (WSUD) bus tour on Thursday 9th October 2014.

A bus filled with 50 planners, engineers and landscape architects from various local government, regulatory and private agencies visited four sites demonstrating best practice WSUD systems, two each in the cities of Gosnells and Armadale.

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The best practices for management of rainfall and stormwater were discussed by the local government asset manager at each site, including the key maintenance and management issues and how they were dealt with. Some interesting discussions ensued regarding practices that have been modified since the treatments had been installed, some as long as 8 years ago.

There was great feedback from attendees on the nature of the tour, with the New WAter Ways Self-drive tour booklet being informally launched at the event. The tour booklet will be soon made available for everyone’s use on the New WAter Ways website in the coming days.  The booklet describes how small, minor and major rainfall events have been successfully managed within key development areas in the South-eastern Metropolitan region of Perth.  New WAter Ways hopes the Self- Drive Tour will facilitate the improved delivery of best practice urban water management across the Swan Coastal Plain.

Further information on best practice stormwater treatments is also available on the New WAter Ways website, depicted in a series of case studies and factsheets which are continually being added to.

New WAter Ways would like to thank Jeff Glass from the City of Gosnells and Carl Done from the City of Armadale for their contribution to the booklet and the tour. Input from Bill Till from the Department of Water, with his infinite knowledge on all things drainage, is also greatly appreciated for keeping us in line with the preferred way of treating stormwater – while keeping the cost down for all!

A special thanks to Swan River Trust for securing National Landcare Programme funding through the Australian Government, making the tour a possibility.

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And lastly if you weren’t aware, next week (20th – 24th October) is National Water Week!  Each year, National Water Week makes a splash across Australia inspiring individuals, communities and organisations to work together to build community awareness and understanding around water issues and opportunities for growth and innovation. In its 20th year running (it’s been going since 1993), National Water Week‘s theme is ‘Water Sources: There are more than you think!’ encouraging sound water practices and investment in all the water sources to ensure we don’t exhaust our current sources in potentially challenging times ahead. Find out about your local National Water Week activities from your state branch of the Australian Water Association. In WA we are having our annual National Water Week Conference at the Parmela Hilton Hotel on 23rd October – look forward to seeing you there!

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