Drainage & densification – IPWEA 2016

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What will Perth and its drainage look like by 2050?

The annual State Institute of Public Works Engineering Australiasia (IPWEA) conference is on this week (9th – 11th March 2016, at the Esplanade Hotel in Fremantle) and the eminent Helen Brookes, Director of Essential Environmental and Chair of Stormwater WA, will be laying down how the people of Perth should be planning their future drainage given the expected densification of the city associated with a population of 3.5 million by 2050.

Helen will be exploring how with existing drainage infrastructure ageing and already at capacity, and with the extent of existing problems poorly understood in many cases through a lack of recent regional or district scale drainage planning there is an urgent need to consider the implications of increasing density.

In particular, Helen will outlinine a decision process for investigating and assessing future drainage system capacity and facilitate focussing resources towards appropriate planning and design standards, and/or upgrades required to support the delivery of increased density. This may require consideration of:

  • Prioritisation of target locations for density
  • Site conditions and consequent ability to provide ‘on-lot’ solutions
  • Stakeholder engagement – including consideration of potentially conflicting objectives
  • Existing system condition and capacity assessments – including future risk of failure
  • Opportunity identification – linking upgrades to asset maintenance and renewal schedules
  • Lifetime costs and funding mechanisms
  • Delivery and control mechanisms

Helen will also identify a number of locations in the Perth/Peel metropolitan area where better stormwater management outcomes are being achieved through collaborative approaches to system upgrades and on-lot provisions, to provide the best mix of density and cost effective infrastructure – which ties in very nicely with this year’s conference theme of ‘Networks’; connecting people, collaboration, communication and incorporation within the public works sector.

So to watch Helen in action and learn more about how we can improve our drainage planning and decision making process, head down to Day 2 (10th March) – Stormwater Management for Urban Revitalisation  – Session 3 of the IPWEA conference this week!

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