Club gets flood levee bank

A FLOOD levee bank at the Warwick Hockey Association could help repair some of the heartbreak of losing the $300,000, newly-installed pitch during the flood.

At this week’s engineering services committee meeting, in a behind-closed-door discussion, council resolved to look into a levee bank to protect the Queen’s Park club.

Floodwaters inundated the pitch and reached halfway up the first floor in the clubhouse, destroying equipment and devastating the association.

The full cost of the damage is estimated at close to $750,000.

The 12-year-old turf was replaced last year before the floods for $300,000.

A grant from the State Government of $100,000 covered some of the cost but the association took out a loan for the balance, which it will still have to pay off despite the total loss.

The association has been unable to host teams and tournaments that it’s brought to the city in previous years and night games had to be cancelled as lights are out of action.

This has impacted on player numbers.

Ever-stoic, when the season began, the association worked tirelessly to make a go of it and has been playing games on grass pitches.

It set up a sub committee, which has raised funds and applied for grants.

Some of the fantastic donations included a new kitchen from Bunnings and grant applications have so far raked in around $130,000, which has mostly gone towards replacing equipment.

Help keeping the grass in order has come from far and wide but looking to the future the association has to find a floodproof way of moving forward.

It has looked at relocation options to Australiana Park and even the playing fields at Slade Campus in Glennie Heights were pitched as an idea, but a total move was considered even more expensive.

Its only option now is to protect the grounds they have and the association pitched the levee idea to council.

Though discussion was conducted behind closed doors, the recommendation passed was that council, “moves to the design and costing of a levee bank for the Warwick Hockey Club.”

There will still be a number of hoops to jump through but the club will be hoping it can access more grant money to get fully operational before next season.

The new Condamine River and Tributaries flood study should help others in similar situations assess their flood risk and plan for the future.

Meetings tomorrow

This weekend, residents will have the chance to have their say on the preliminary findings of the study, which has been ongoing since August last year.

A series of public meetings will reveal data, which has been built into maps of the flood plain.

The study focuses on the risk of flooding in Warwick, Killarney, Allora, Yangan, Emu Vale, Tannymorel and Pratten, as well as rural areas along the floodplain.

The aim is to develop computer models of the flood plain and quantify and map flood risks in the area.

It has been delayed as the consultants carrying out the study gathered extra information from the latest events.

This will be the first round of community sessions and designing, modelling and mapping are due to continue in July.

There will be another community session at the end of July where discussions on reducing community vulnerability will take place.

There will be a third community session late August to discuss the flood management plan, with the final project to be complete in September.

At this weekend’s public sessions, there will be displays of the flood model and residents are invited to drop in and stay as long as they need.

There will be study team members available to discuss the plans and other issues residents wish to raise.

Residents from areas other than Warwick and Killarney are also welcome to attend.

What do you think? email editor@warwickdailynews.com.au.



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