2023 – Navigating the Challenges of Partially Decommissioning a Multi-purpose Water Storage

Griffin Barry, Sam Taubert

Beaconsfield Reservoir was constructed in 1918 to supply drinking water to the south east of Melbourne. Over its 100 year life there have been numerous changes to the embankment and appurtenant structures and modern shortfalls in good practise design have been a reason for unease. Now that the storage has been disconnected from the water supply network, it incurs ongoing costs and risk for Melbourne Water. However, the water storage is situated in a Public Conservation and Resource Zone and is an asset that interest groups and the wider community are passionate about. Over the course of the last decade, Melbourne Water has explored options for the future of the water storage while being mindful of the community interest. Most recently, navigating the challenges of business alignment, Multi-Criteria Analysis (MCA) assessment criteria, hydraulic design considerations, developing concept plans and reservoir drawdown. Melbourne Water has arrived at a decision to partially decommission the water storage.

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