East Bank Flood Resilience Program
Operated by Seqwater, the Mount Crosby Water Treatment Plants (East Bank and West Bank) are a critical part of the SEQ Water Grid, supplying about 50 per cent of South East Queensland’s drinking water. Seqwater has developed a Master Plan for the East Bank Pump Station site, as part of the East Bank Flood Resilience Program.
The Brisbane River Flood Study completed in 2017, highlighted that a number of buildings within the Mt Crosby precinct needed to be upgraded or relocated to increase the flood resilience of these assets. The East Bank Flood Resilience program focuses on mitigating the flooding risk to this essential infrastructure and renewing vital assets, while paying tribute to the rich cultural heritage of the site.
The development application for the Master Plan was submitted to Brisbane City Council in 2018 and Seqwater has now been granted approval to proceed. The development application approval of the Masterplan includes the re-development of the East Bank Pump Station site, construction of a new electrical substation, improvements to the local community hall, and a new community park.
The construction of a new bridge across the Brisbane River and a new purpose – built kindergarten are also being considered and are subject to further planning and approvals. Construction work is expected to commence on the electrical substation pad site in late - 2021.
- Project documents
- Frequently asked questions
What is the East Bank Flood Resilience Program?
The Mount Crosby Water Treatment Plants are a critical part of the SEQ Water Grid and supply about 50 per cent of South East Queensland’s drinking water supply including the cities of Brisbane, Ipswich and Logan. Following the severe flood events in 2011 and 2013, Seqwater identified improvements across the SEQ Water Grid to improve resilience during all weather. In 2016, Seqwater began a detailed assessment of the East Bank Pump Station site and its ability to cope and recover during a flood. The Brisbane River Catchment Flood Study showed the probability of floodwater inundating the East Bank Pump Station site was greater than previously thought, which is why Seqwater is focused on mitigating the flooding risk to this essential infrastructure. Seqwater’s East Bank Flood Resilience Program (EBFRP) involves a number of improvements, to reduce flood risks to critical bulk water infrastructure along the Brisbane River in Mount Crosby. The Master Plan also aims to celebrate the area’s rich cultural heritage. Seqwater recognises the historical significance of the East Bank Pump Station and surrounding precinct and is committed to working with key stakeholders and the local community to revitalise the area as part of the EBFRP.What is the EBFRP Master Plan?
Seqwater has finalised a Master Plan for the East Bank Pump Station site and surrounding area, as part of the East Bank Flood Resilience Program (EBFRP). The Master Plan aims to reduce flood risks, while also celebrating the area’s rich cultural heritage and improving connectivity for the local community.
Seqwater worked with key stakeholders and local residents to develop a Master Plan that protects our vital water infrastructure and also benefits the community.How has the local community been involved?
In early 2018, Seqwater developed a draft Master Plan for the East Bank Pump Station site, aimed at reducing flood risks, while also celebrating the area’s rich cultural heritage and increasing connectivity. The draft Master Plan was released for consultation in August 2018, and the community was invited to attend an open day at the East Bank Pump Station on Saturday 11 August.
Feedback included an interest in increasing connectivity throughout the area, better access to community facilities, and maintaining the site’s rich cultural heritage.
Following community consultation there were some changes to the Master Plan. Seqwater presented the updated Master Plan to the community at a community session on Thursday 18 October 2018 at Mount Crosby Bowls Club.Why is the Mount Crosby East Bank Pump Station important?
The East Bank Pump Station pumps up to 500 million litres (ML) of water a day to the East Bank Water Treatment Plant, which is a critical part of the SEQ Water Grid.
The historical Mount Crosby East Bank Pump Station is located near the Mount Crosby Weir along the Brisbane River. The pumping station was completed in 1893. Originally steam-powered, coal was transported via a tramway to fire the boilers, creating the steam that drove the pumping engines. This was the practice until steaming ceased in 1948.
Inside the station are eight wells and 16 high voltage pumps. River water is drawn from the weir pool through two intake towers and into the East Bank Pump Station. The pumps then move water to the treatment plant to be turned into safe drinking water.How can I find out more about the Master Plan?
Seqwater will continue updating this website with the project information, including newsletters and event information, as it becomes available. You can also subscribe to project updates by subscribing to our email updates. To find out more contact the project team by:
•emailing [email protected]
•phoning 1300 737 928 and asking to speak to a member of the project team
•writing to the East Bank Flood Resilience Program Manager, PO Box 328 Ipswich QLD 4305.Why is the substation being relocated to higher ground?
The East Bank Pump Station pumps up to 500 million litres (ML) of water a day to the East Bank Water Treatment Plant, supplying drinking water to 1.6 million South East Queenslanders.
Following the severe flood events in 2011 and 2013, Seqwater identified improvements across the SEQ Water Grid to improve resilience during all weather. In 2016, Seqwater began a detailed assessment of the East Bank Pump Station site and its ability to cope and recover during a flood. The Brisbane River Catchment Flood Study showed the probability of floodwater inundating the East Bank Pump Station site was greater than previously thought, which is why Seqwater is focused on mitigating the flooding risk to this essential infrastructure.
After a flood, we need to get the Mount Crosby Water Treatment Plants operating as quickly as possible, because water is critical for human health and large volumes of water are needed for a flood clean up.
To improve flood resilience, Seqwater will construct a new substation on higher ground and decommission the old substation.
Relocating the substation will ensure the pump station can be back up and running as quickly as possible after a major flood. The existing substation, located near the historic pump station building, is nearing end-of-life and will soon require replacement. Given the critical role of this infrastructure and flood risk associated with the current location, constructing a new substation on higher ground will help secure South East Queensland’s water supply during all weather.Where will the new substation be located?
The Master Plan involves constructing a new substation on Seqwater-owned vacant land on the northern side of Stumers Road, Mount Crosby, beside the existing community hall. A number of potential locations were assessed as part of developing the Master Plan and the preferred site was chosen because of its proximity to existing water infrastructure and low flood risk. The site also has minimal impact on the area’s cultural heritage.When will construction of the substation start?
Energex has started detailed planning for the new substation and at this stage, construction is expected to commence in late - 2021. More information about the timing will be available as planning progresses.What has Seqwater done about the flood risks since 2011?
Following the severe flood events in 2011 and 2013, Seqwater identified improvements across the SEQ Water Grid to improve resilience during all weather. Since then, Seqwater has increased its chemical storage capacity at the plants so we can continue to treat water during severe weather, invested in improving catchment health, and enhanced our emergency response plans. Capital projects at the Mt Crosby Water Treatment Plants include:
· water proofing the wells inside the East Bank Pump Station
· repairing the river embankment near the East Bank Pump Station
· an alum upgrade to improve treatment processes at East Bank
· centrifuge upgrades to improve sludge handling at both East Bank and West Bank
· upgrading the onsite chemical storage capacity at the East Bank Water Treatment Plant.
In 2016, Seqwater also began a detailed assessment of the East Bank Pump Station site and its ability to cope and recover during a flood.
The Brisbane River Catchment Flood Study showed the probability of floodwater inundating the East Bank Pump Station site was greater than previously thought, which is why Seqwater is focused on mitigating the flooding risk to this essential infrastructure.
As a result, Seqwater has been working closely with Energex to increase the flood immunity of the existing critical electrical infrastructure that provides power to the East Bank Pump Station. Seqwater worked closely with Brisbane City Council to develop the East Bank Flood Resilience Program and Master Plan to reduce flood risks to critical bulk water infrastructure along the Brisbane River, including the East Bank Pump Station.Why is the Mount Crosby C&K Kindergarten being relocated?
Due to the program of upcoming works, including construction of the substation and future pump station, and the operational nature of the site, the C&K Kindergarten will be relocated from the Seqwater operational precinct.
The Master Plan involves constructing a new community facility for the C&K Kindergarten. This allows the existing hall to remain available for community use. C&K staff and parents have been informed about the relocation and Seqwater will work with the kindergarten operators to make sure there are no disruptions to service as a result of the project.Where will the kindergarten relocate to?
The Master Plan proposes relocating the kindergarten to a new facility on the corner of Stumers Road and Mount Crosby Road (near the Mount Crosby Bowls Club).
This area has been identified for the new facility as it will have minimal environmental and heritage impacts, and improve safety and accessibility for the kindergarten community. We are also working with the kindergarten operators to make sure there are no disruptions to service.When is the kindergarten relocation expected to occur?
At this stage, the kindergarten relocation is subject to planning approvals. The relocation will occur during the holiday period to minimise disruptions to service.What is happening to the Mount Crosby Weir bridge?
The Mount Crosby Weir was constructed in 1927 to create a pumping pool for the water treatment plant and with a bridge crossing to provide access to coal for the nearby pump station. Today, the bridge over the weir is open to traffic and locals who regularly use it to access the sporting fields on the other side of the river. The Master Plan involves constructing a new vehicle bridge over the Brisbane River, and repurposing the existing heritage weir bridge for pedestrians. Repurposing the existing bridge will allow residents to safely walk across the river and access the Mount Crosby Sportsground on Allawah Road.Why is the new bridge required?
During low-level flooding at Colleges Crossing, the Mount Crosby Weir bridge becomes a key access point for the community including school buses. Closure of the Mount Crosby Weir bridge can result in detours of up to one-hour (approximately 30 kilometres). The bridge is also critical to Seqwater operations and provides a link between the West Bank Water Treatment Plant (WTP) and East Bank WTP.
In 2015, Seqwater introduced a nine-tonne weight limit on the 92-year-old weir bridge as a safety precaution following engineering assessments of the structure. Several options to address the safety issues have been assessed including upgrading the existing weir bridge, permanently closing the weir bridge to traffic and building a new bridge. The new bridge will address safety risks at the Mount Crosby Weir and improve connectivity for all road users.
The option of a new bridge provides greater flood resilience than the existing weir bridge and allows access for heavy vehicles such as school buses. The bridge will be about two metres higher than the existing bridge, reducing the risk of the road becoming inundated during severe weather events. Once construction is complete, the old weir bridge will be repurposed for pedestrians and cyclists.Where will the new vehicle bridge be constructed?
The new vehicle bridge will be constructed about 15 metres immediately downstream of the existing Mount Crosby Weir bridge on the Brisbane River. Several options were assessed to address the safety issues including upgrading the existing weir bridge, permanently closing the weir bridge to traffic and building a new bridge.Will the new bridge impact the historic weir bridge remains or fish ladder?
No. The new bridge will be designed so its piers, foundations and abutments will not impact the historic bridge remains in the river bed, which are relics from the 1899 timber bridge built to transport coal across the Brisbane River. In addition, the bridge won’t impact the historic fish ladder on the downstream side of the weir.What will the new bridge look like?
The design is still subject to change, but it is expected to be made of steel-reinforced concrete, measuring about 13 metres high (about two metres higher than the weir bridge), 190 metres long and nine metres wide including the barriers and shoulders. We are seeking cultural heritage advice on the bridge design to minimise its impacts, where possible, on the surrounding heritage setting.
The height of the new bridge will reduce the risk of the road becoming inundated during severe weather events. However, it will be designed to be inundated in large and extreme weather to allow it to be reopened as soon as flood waters pass.Can I fish from the existing bridge, when it is converted to a pedestrian bridge?
The Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fishing (DAF) prevents fishing in certain areas, including those where fish may mass or be stranded near artificial barriers and be susceptible to overfishing. This applies to the Mount Crosby Weir bridge, which also functions as the Weir wall. The Brisbane River is closed to all forms of fishing from 100 metres upstream to 200 metres downstream of the Mount Crosby Weir. Fishing will not be permitted from the weir bridge.Why are there houses at the East Bank Pump Station site?
The Mount Crosby Water Treatment Plant complex was built in the late 19th century to expand the reticulated water supply for Brisbane. Throughout the 1880s, Brisbane suffered from repeat shortages of potable water and a permanent water supply needed to be found.
A group of houses were built around the same time for the plant’s operators because of the relative isolation of Mount Crosby. A distinctive feature of the Works Hill site is the placement of the dwellings, which was designed to reflect the hierarchy of the occupants. The Works Hill residential precinct comprises two detached houses, four duplexes and one cottage, and is one of the few examples of this type of worker housing remaining in Queensland. The Works Hill residential precinct is located on Stumers Road, to the east of the East Bank Pump Station.
The houses were designed by Brisbane-based (Scottish-born) Charles McLay, who built Customs House in Brisbane, and are listed on Brisbane City Council’s heritage register.How will the project impact the natural environment? Will there be any trees cleared?
Seqwater acknowledges the environmental importance of the area, which includes large areas of natural bushland in the Stumers Road Reserve. The Master Plan relies on existing Seqwater-owned land and Council-owned land to minimise the footprint of the East Bank Pump Station site. During construction it is likely that some localised vegetation clearing will be required. Heritage trees, such as the protected pines near Recca’s Park will be preserved or relocated.
Seqwater is also working with a cultural heritage specialist to develop a plan to protect heritage buildings and artefacts within the precinct.