An automated drainage pump system is being installed to help disperse floodwaters in Woods Estate, located in the small town of Silverleaves on Phillip Island, VIC.

The installation of two pump wells, underground boring, new stormwater collection points within the road reserves, as well as electrical and plumbing works, are expected to take two weeks to complete.

Bass Coast Shire Council’s Infrastructure Director, Felicity Sist, said the system will automatically remove water, which has in the past been done by a street sweeper.

“This pump system will start drawing down water before it completely fills the absorption pits and the new drainage pits, and then discharge the water to the main drain in Coghlan Road.”

Ms Sist said the new system will help with dispersing rainfall runoff during extreme rain events from the infiltration garden beds areas within the estate.

“The only effective means of removing this pooling of water is by using a series of underground pumps to gradually remove excess water from the recently installed absorption pits. Additional stormwater runoff pits will be installed to move this water in the pump sites,” Ms Sist said.

There will be times where water will be ponding within the road reserve in Moore Street and Tedwood Court, with the automated pump system helping to remove the runoff over six to 12 hours after the rainfall has stopped.

The works will be located in Tedwood Court and Moore Street areas. The underground boring works will also be carried out in Settlement Road and to the main drain in Coghlan Road to discharge the stormwater runoff.

Power supply to the pump wells by SP Ausnet could take up to 6 weeks from completion of site works.

Mayor, Cr Neil Rankine, said the Basscoast Council had committed $95,000 to this project to help alleviate flooding in the area.

“The Woods Estate area is very low-lying and has flooded regularly over the years with heavy rains as the water has no-where to go. This current project will not change the geography of the area, but will speed up the dispersion of pooled water when it rains,” Cr Rankine said.

“Over time, Council is looking at providing funding for a long term drainage strategy for the whole of Silverleaves. This project will involve others, such as Melbourne Water.

“The objective of the strategy is to find sustainable drainage solutions to effectively drain Silverleaves, while considering the environmental implications of those solutions. The strategy will have to take a very long-term view, as most of this infrastructure has a life of up to 100 years.”

Woods Estate area subdivision was created on the basis of stormwater and rainfall runoff being absorbed into the sandy soils. Over time, the influence of new development within the estate and the introduction of kikuyu type grasses preventing infiltration of rainfall, as well as higher groundwater levels, have added to poor drainage in this area.

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