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The project helps Council work towards a 25% reduction in potable water use by 2015

Fairpark Reserve RPL Cricket

Fairpark Reserve SWH Project

Fairpark Reserve SWH Project

Fairpark Reserve

Fairpark Reserve Stormwater Harvesting Scheme

Knox City Council

Manuka Drive, Ferntree Gully, Melbourne, VIC 3156 | Map:

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Project Overview

The Fairpark Reserve Stormwater Harvesting Scheme diverts stormwater from a 20 hectare residential stormwater catchment to irrigate the sports field at Fairpark Reserve, Ferntree Gully. The diverted stormwater is pre-treated to remove litter, sediments and oils and stored in a 510,000 litre below-ground tank. This water is then filtered and UV treated before being used to irrigate the oval. Fairpark Reserve is home to over 350 registered participants across both Cricket and Football.

Based on the stormwater catchment size and existing drainage infrastructure, an estimated 10.8 Million litres of water can be captured and treated in a year with about 4 Million litres being used for irrigation during the summer months, providing a sustainable substitute for mains water.

Drivers and Objectives

  • Conserve potable water
  • Utilise stormwater for irrigation
  • Improve stormwater quality
  • Reduce peak flows during storm events
  • Provide a safe playing surface
  • Minimise disruption to organised sports during prolonged drought periods
  • Engage the community on the benefits of Integrated Water Cycle Management


  • Knox City Council (Sustainable Initiatives for Outdoor Sporting Facilities Program)
  • Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities (National Urban Water & Desalination Program)
  • Etlis Consulting (Design consultant)
  • DBS Plumbing Services (Construction contractors)

Project Outcomes

  • This project has reduced dependence on mains water by harvesting and reusing stormwater from a 20 hectare catchment and save approximately 10.8 ML of water annually.
  • The captured water is used to irrigate Fairpark Reserve which has been converted to warm season grass to further reduce demand for water.
  • The project helps Council work towards a 25% reduction in potable water use by 2015.
  • Improved the quality of the stormwater entering Blind Creek by removing gross pollutants and sediments.

Lessons Learnt

  • It is important to have key parts of the system remotely monitored (e.g. pumps, tank levels) to detect and address system faults quickly.
  • The timing of excavation works is crucial as the installation of the underground tank coincided with wetter than usual Autumn resulting in long project delays.
  • The inspection frequency of the Gross Pollutant Trap needs to be assessed regularly, taking into account the type of upstream catchment. The inspections in subsequent years can be adjusted based on the volume of litter and sediments being captured in the GPT.
  • The ongoing technical training of sportsground staff is fundamental to the success of the maintenance of the sportsground.
  • Engagement of the community should include an understanding of the urban water cycle which highlights - what is stormwater and how it is harvested.

Project Cost

  • The overall cost of the scheme is $534,000 which includes Design and Construction costs.
  • Approximately $5,000 per year for operations, inspections, reactive and routine maintenance.


  • Conceptual design - April 2008
  • Detailed design - November 2010
  • Construction start - March 2011
  • Construction completion - June 2011


Sustainability Officer

T 03 9298 8000