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Tuesday, April 20, 2021

City’s commitment to mitigating Wallsend flooding continues

City of Newcastle is moving forward with projects to help mitigate flooding in Wallsend.

Tenders are currently being called to upgrade stormwater infrastructure at Cowper Street, including the installation of a channel bypass adjacent to the existing bridge, which will help water flow more easily through Ironbark Creek. 

In addition to improving the flow of stormwater, the upgrade will improve the amenity of this section of channel leading into Wallsend Park, with the upgraded creek to be widened, realigned and flanked by sandstone to renew the existing concrete walled channel.  

The planned improvements at Cowper Street follow a call for tender in February for the demolition of a vacant building adjacent to the Nelson Street bridge.

It was acquired by the City in 2018 to facilitate the future widening of the Hunter Water Corporation-owned Ironbark Creek stormwater channel. 

Widening the Hunter Water channel and replacing the Tyrrell Street, Nelson Street and Boscawen Street bridges are key elements of the Ironbark Creek Flood Mitigation Plan. 

Newcastle Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes said the projects were important priorities for the Wallsend community. 

“We are committed to delivering both the Ironbark Creek Flood Mitigation Plan and our program of traffic improvements and amenity upgrades to the Wallsend town centre, which will support businesses and residents,” she explained.

“By upgrading this section of underground storm water system with larger drains, we hope to see a reduction in damaging flash flooding in the centre of Wallsend.” 

The upgrade of the Cowper Street Bridge culvert is a critical first step before the City can proceed with upgrades to the nearby intersection of Cowper and Kokera streets, replacing the roundabout with signals.

Further traffic improvements in Wallsend are planned under the Wallsend Local Centres Program, with detailed design for the upgrade of existing traffic signals at the intersection of Cowper Street and Nelson Street set to start later in 2021, with blackspot funding from Transport for NSW. 

A new Tyrrell Street Bridge was opened in April last year following the City’s $3.3 million replacement of the original 1930 built structure.  

Detailed design of the replacement and raising of the Nelson and Boscawen Street bridges is also scheduled to begin later in 2021.

The tender for the upgrade of the Cowper Street culvert is available via https://www.tenderlink.com/newcastle/

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