Our water future’s in the pipeline

12 May 2020

 The City’s solution to managing its excess recycled water reached a milestone today with the installation of a 900 metre-long pipeline between Main Beach and Southport.

The Long Term Recycled Water Release Plan involves two of the most complex marine pipeline crossings of their kind in Australia.

Mayor Tom Tate said the $70 million upgrade would increase the capacity of the existing network, which was built 30 years ago.

“With our population expected to double to 1.2 million by 2050, this network will ensure our growing city is well catered for,” he said.

The pre-assembled 1.2 metre diameter pipe will be installed under the Nerang River, from Winchester Street in Southport to Waterways Drive, Main Beach.  

In a delicate marine towing operation involving 13 vessels, the polyethylene pipe will be pulled slowly by barges and tugs down the Broadwater from The Spit arriving at Waterways Drive, adjacent to the carpark at Pelican Beach.

It will then be pulled through below the river bed without disturbing the ecosystem, a process which is expected to take around 17 hours.

On 12 and 13 May, mariners are asked to try and avoid the area, which will be patrolled by Water Police. Vessels will still be able to move throughout the Broadwater and need to follow instructions from authorities.

The second marine crossing at the Broadwater runs from Quota Park at Biggera Waters to South Stradbroke Island and involves excavating a shaft at each end and then lowering the pipes in separate segments as they are jacked progressively across the Broadwater.    

Other elements of the recycled water project include pump station upgrades, upgraded release points at the Seaway and upgraded pipelines on South Stradbroke Island.

For information and an animation on the project visit:



Our water future’s in the pipeline   photo