$430,000 is needed to assess Warwick and Stanthorpe’s stormwater pipes.
$430,000 is needed to assess Warwick and Stanthorpe’s stormwater pipes. David Nielsen

Decaying pipes to drain budget

A SNEAK peek into Warwick’s stormwater pipes revealed some nasty cracks, which could spell disaster if they burst.

Council’s engineering department will try to squeeze the $430,000 needed for an assessment of Warwick and Stanthorpe’s stormwater pipes and pits out of the budget.

At yesterday’s engineering services meeting acting director Adam Colrain was in no doubt the work was necessary.

As he showed council CCTV footage of inside a section of pipe from Victoria St back towards Fitzroy St, near Canning St, councillors were equally concerned with the level of damage.

The significant drain, which takes stormwater from the catchment behind McDonalds, is not under a road, but it seems some sort of heavy vehicles have been travelling on the land above the pipe, causing damage.

Mr Colrain said if the 30 to 40 year-old pipe collapsed, it would cause “serious problems”.

“This is probably not an isolated incident as far as our pipe networks go,” he said.

With about 70km of pipe in Warwick, Mr Colrain said it was vital to assess its condition.

The issue will now be considered in council’s upcoming budget deliberations for 2011/12.

As part of the design and assets capital works budget, council will be asked to consider the project along with a stormwater management strategy for Allora and Killarney, which will cost $300,000.

Also included in the budget request is flood studies for Leyburn and Stanthorpe.

Mr Colrain said he hoped funding would be made available for these studies and it was council’s intent to do the full region, as was the case in the Lockyer Valley.

State and Federal government usually go thirds in the cost along with the council but since the latest flood disasters, the local authority could be given a full 100% funding.

The Leyburn study could cost $135,000, while the Stanthorpe study could cost $220,000.

Work is still underway on the Condamine and tributaries flood study, which Mr Colrain said was about 50% completed.

It should be released to the public in September.



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