SA Water is close to completing the installation of 18km of new underground pipe to connect the new treatment plant at Brinkley to the existing sewer network

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Image: SA Water is close to completing the installation of 18km of new underground pipe. Photo: Courtesy of LoggaWiggler/Pixabay

While construction continues on a new wastewater treatment plant for Murray Bridge, SA Water has unveiled plans for a unique art installation incorporated into the design of one of its local wastewater pump stations.

Both works are part of a $52 million upgrade to the regional centre’s sewer network, which will support future growth through increased capacity and enhanced treatment processes and odour control facilities.

SA Water’s Acting Chief Executive Mark Gobbie said the pump station site is near the entrance to Murray Bridge, so it was important to create a space that is visually appealing and can still be enjoyed by the local community.

“The main feature will be an interpretive walking trail through a landscaped area around the pump station and will eventually connect into the Rural City of Murray Bridge’s section of the Murray Coorong Trail,” Mark said.

“Designed by Aboriginal architect and visual artist Paul Herzich, and in consultation with the Ngarrindjeri Regional Authority, the shape of the pump station trail depicts the area of Ngarrindjeri Country and important water sites within it, including the River Murray, Murray Mouth, Coorong, Lake Alexandrina and Lake Albert.

“Blue and brown cladding material, made primarily of concrete and steel, also references the river system and the creation story of how the Murray came to be.

“A really special part of the new site will be an art sculpture of Kungari (black swan) eggs, chosen due to the bird’s Ngartji (Totem) significance to Ngarrindjeri people.

“The whole landscape and architectural design of the site – which also includes a range of native plant species and various educational signage – focuses on sharing Ngarrindjeri culture and their connection to water with the wider community.

“Construction of the pump station will continue over the next few months, before landscaping and planting is carried out within the first half of next year.”

The wastewater pump station is one of three being built as part of the upgrade, and SA Water is close to completing the installation of around 18-kilometres of new underground pipe to connect the new treatment plant at Brinkley to the existing sewer network.

“Since our lead contractor John Holland began construction of the new plant this time last year, the site has really evolved, with the structure of the building starting to take shape,” Mark said.

“Next on the schedule is the installation of mechanical equipment associated with wastewater treatment, including pumps, filters, inlet screens, UV and sludge handling systems, as well as more than 500 solar panels that will help to power the treatment facility.”

The new wastewater treatment plant and all associated infrastructure is expected to begin operating in early 2020. Following this, SA Water will gradually decommission the existing plant adjacent the Murray Bridge Marina.