Boggabilla and Toomelah water pipeline opened

AN almost $5 million project to drought-proof the small northern NSW communities of Boggabilla and Toomelah has been officially opened.

Northern Tablelands MP Adam Marshall and Moree Plains Shire Deputy Mayor Greg Smith commissioned the new 15-kilometre bi-directional water pipeline, pump station and inlet infrastructure between the two communities yesterday.

The NSW Government funded the total cost of the works, in the order of $4.6 million, from its Water Security for Regions program, with the project being delivered on time and on budget by Moree Plains Shire Council.

“This is truly an unprecedented and incredibly exciting day for the Boggabilla and Toomelah communities,” Mr Marshall said.

“This project will secure the long-term water supply of both townships through the construction of a pipeline that will allow each community to draw water from the other. It will also address water quality by way of additional treatment within the system.

Northern Tablelands MP Adam Marshall, left, Moree Plains Shire Council’s Water Project Manager Graham Macpherson and Deputy Mayor Greg Smith unveil the plaque.

“The new pipeline and associated upgrades ensure Boggabilla and Toomelah residents can depend on reliable and clean water from their taps, even through the very dry times.”

Mr Marshall said the former water supply infrastructure for Toomelah had hit its use-by-date, with water sourced from a single artesian bore via an electrical pump. He said there had been instances when the town’s water supply has failed during the hotter months and water has had to be trucked in by council.

“For Boggabilla, silt from floods can clog up the existing water inlets, causing problems with flow and water quality,” Mr Marshall said.

“Through this investment, both towns now have the flexibility to pump water to where it’s needed, helping these towns grow sustainably into the future.”

The work undertaken included:

  • Construction of a new bi-directional pipeline between Boggabilla and Toomelah;
  • New inlet infrastructure at Boggabilla; and
  • New transfer pump stations in Boggabilla and Toomelah.

A floating pontoon was constructed on the Macintyre River at Boggabilla to hold the new water inlet – avoiding the silty, murkier water at the bottom of the river.

Cr Smith said the pipeline would greatly assist council to provide a high quality and expendable water supply to both villages.

“The old water inlet had a lot of issues especially the siltation and the damage it did to our pumping systems, when the river was low,” Cr Smith said.

“With the upgrades, we can now extract water with a lot more confidence in its quality and quantity.

“This is a great outcome for our Shire and a good partnership between council and the NSW Government.”

This was the first of four water security projects completed by Moree Plains Shire Council in the region. Together, $16 million is being invested by the NSW Government to improve water quality and security at Boggabilla, Toomelah, Biniguy, Pallamallawa, Ashley and Moree.

Media Release: October 31, 2018