Tuesday, 10 December 2019 16:07

Blacktown to harness stormwater for cooler streets

Thermal image demonstrating the capacity of stormwater to cool pavement Thermal image demonstrating the capacity of stormwater to cool pavement Blacktown City Council

Blacktown City Council is investigating ways to use stormwater to help water street trees and keep local streets cool.

The benefits of trees are well known: their shade reduces the surrounding air and surface temperature, they clean our air, and provide amenity to our local streets.  However, trees need water to grow and in our current drought conditions, every drop counts. 

Over the past few months, Blacktown City Council has been busy consulting with key external stakeholders, as well as internal staff from the asset design, construction and maintenance teams. 

In September, WSROC, Western Sydney Parklands Trust and Western Sydney Planning Partnership attended Blacktown City Council’s first Water Sensitive Urban Design workshop.  This workshop highlighted the benefits of using stormwater to passively irrigate street trees and examples of where these projects have been successfully implemented.  

A second workshop, held in November, had a design focus to review Blacktown’s standard tree pit drawings.  Council will be developing new designs for the installation of street trees so that stormwater is captured and utilised in a more efficient and cost-effective way.  

By reviewing standard drawings, Blacktown hopes to create better street tree designs that will:

  • maximise the tree canopy for thermal comfort;
  • increase and retain soil moisture over long periods;
  • reduce potable water usage;
  • reduce polluted stormwater runoff to local waterways;
  • have low maintenance;
  • be cost effective; and
  • can be easily retrofitted in older suburbs.

Council will be trialling these new tree pit designs in 2020.

 

 

Last modified on Friday, 13 December 2019 10:08