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Simpson Street tunnel upgrade

News Article Date: 
Wednesday, 17 February 2016

A key part of Warrnambool’s drainage network – the Simpson Street tunnel - is being upgraded.

The first stage of the $5.4 million project is now under way.

“The Simpson Street tunnel drains stormwater away from a large area within east Warrnambool and conveys it underneath Simpson Street and the EJ King Reserve to the Hopkins River,” Warrnambool City Council Senior Projects Engineer Rohan McKinnon said.

“At the surface there will be little to see but underground a major engineering project will be in full swing.

“The project has two major stages. The first is the ‘resleeving’ a 200m section of the tunnel to be carried out by a specialist firm, ITS Pipetech, which is experienced in a technique of applying a steel reinforced concrete suited to the Simpson Street tunnel.

Concrete for the project will be sourced from Hanson Ready Mix Concrete in Warrnambool.

“The Simpson Street tunnel has served the community well for many decades but inspections in recent years had revealed the state of the unlined sandstone tunnel had deteriorated to the point where action was required,” Mr McKinnon said.

ITS Pipetech is establishing a work base in King Reserve and will have a smaller base set up at a tunnel access point near the intersection of Thompson and Simpson streets.

The second stage of the project will involve the construction of a stormwater retention basin within the Warrnambool Racecourse.

“The stormwater basin will be able to contain a large volume of water in the event of a severe storm and it is anticipated it could also provide a water supply for the racecourse,” Mr McKinnon said.

“Design details for the second stage of the project are being finalised in consultation with stakeholders at the racecourse.”

The project is fully funded by Warrnambool City Council.


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