Construction is now finished on the biggest infrastructure upgrade in Sunraysia’s irrigation history.
The $120 million Sunraysia Modernisation
Project (SMP) began in early 2014 and has this month been completed on time and on budget. On 21 September 2016, Assistant
Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister Luke Harsuyker officially opened the SMP.
Funded with $103 million from the Federal Government and $17 million from Lower Murray Water’s capital works budget, the SMP’s aim was to improve the efficiency and quality of irrigation water delivery by replacing open irrigation channels with pipelines and automated pumping stations.
Through the life of the Project, there have been three major extensions to the original scope of works.
The new system is fully operational and all growers are connected, although rehabilitation works will continue for several weeks.
Thank you to irrigators and the wider community for their patience, co-operation and support throughout the project.
We look forward to watching our district’s potential unfold through the benefits of modern, efficient irrigation infrastructure and the diversity of new crops and opportunities the SMP has allowed.
What has SMP delivered?
The objective of the SMP was to provide 365-day water supply to as many irrigation customers as possible and to improve overall water quality by replacing channels with a pipeline.
As the SMP was rolled out, the project team identified further efficiencies and potential opportunities that would enhance the original project outcomes – to increase the number of customers who would benefit.
Contracts were structured and the project was planned to allow enhancements to be built in during rollout – an unprecedented achievement in Australian public water infrastructure delivery.
The enhancements were delivered within the original project budget and within the original project timeframes.
These enhancements allowed much more pipeline than was originally planned to be installed across the district.
The original SMP business case was for improved service to 897 (49 %) irrigation assessments in the Sunraysia Irrigation District, or 5912 hectares.
The enhanced SMP has delivered upgraded service to 1198 (65 %) irrigation assessments (7858 hectares).
Whilst the project is complete there are some repairs works underway which require the speed restrictions below:
- Millewa Avenue, Red Cliffs between Sixteenth Street and Karadoc Avenue – speed reduction to 60kms.