A peaceful bush retreat and wildlife haven has been spared by the diversion of a new sewerage pipeline.

The project was originally planned to go through the Bunyaville State Park Forest but Unitywater and Queensland Urban Utilities have come up with a solution.

Amy Schostakowski reports.


The Arana Hills Rising Main Diversion Project will save money, provide for future population growth and help maintain water quality in the South Pine region.

Originally sewage was to be pumped from Arana Hills, through the Bunyaville State Forest Park to the Brendale sewage treatment plant.

Now the pipeline will divert sewerage from the Arana Hills catchment to the Luggage Point Wate plant at Pinkenba, 100 per cent of the effluent can be recycled.

Jon Black, Unitywater CEO: “From a capital perspective it’s actually allowing us to defer expenditure of around $55-million at Brendale which is allowing us to actually pay for this.”

In addition to the financial savings, the project has significant environmental benefits for local saltwater ways and green areas.

The diversion of the pipeline means local wildlife and plant species in the Bunyaville State Forest Park will remain untouched – resulting in a favourable vote from the community.

Brian Battersby, Division 10 Councillor, Moreton Bay Regional Council: “While the job has only been in progress now for a couple of weeks, I’ve had very little contact from the community of any concerns so far – so good news.”

The project will cater for population growth in the area for the next 10 years, before an upgrade will be needed.

Jon Black, Unitywater CEO: “I think that is where we have to work very closely with the council about the growth and very careful planning is important as we try to minimise the cost and also keep an eye on the environment.”

The $4.5-million project combines trenching and micro-tunneling, which uses a remotely controlled tunnel boring machine, to directly install pipe underground.

Construction started last month and is expected to be up and running within 12 months.

Jon Black, Unitywater CEO: “The micro-tunneling is one of these new techniques, a new technology which allows us to get a pipe in the ground without digging a big trench.”

Councillor Battersby says restoration and disruption are normally the two biggest issues in projects of this kind, but the local response has been overwhelmingly positive.

Brian Battersby, Division 10 Councillor, Moreton Bay Regional Council: “Naturally they are always concerned about restoration works outside of their property, and this is a fairly significant engineering job but it has some great environmental benefits.”

Amy Schostakowski, QUT News.