Positive milestone for Malpas upgrade

01st Jun 2021

Armidale Regional Council will move forward with planning to raise Malpas Dam’s spillway by 6.49 metres after councillors supported a recommendation at the May 26 Ordinary Council meeting.
The decision was based on the findings of reports from the NSW Public Works Advisory, the NSW Urban Water Services Armidale Yield Study and the Malpas Dam Upgrade Assessment undertaken by Council staff.
Armidale Regional Council’s General Manager James Roncon said this is a positive milestone for the multimillion dollar project.
“Securing the region’s water supply is a major priority for council, so this decision is a welcome step in ensuring the region is prepared for future droughts,” said Mr Roncon. “We believe an investment in water security is crucial to protecting the wellbeing of the region for decades to come.”
The Malpas Dam Upgrade Options Report analysed three options, including keeping the existing full storage level, raising the spillway by three metres, and raising the spillway by 6.49 metres.
Raising the full storage level by 6.49 metres will increase Malpas Dam’s storage from 12.2 gigalitres to 27.6 gigalitres, and while this won’t provide the full secure yield required over the 30 year time frame, it will significantly increase the storage volume and will add the capacity to accept pumped inputs from other catchments.
Council will now commence the preparation of a business case for the project to explore the funding source, the impact on Council’s financial sustainability, impact on operating costs, and the affordability for residents and businesses.