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Stormwater, runoff and drainage

It is important to manage stormwater effectively as it can cause damage to the environment and public health and poses a risk to the safety of our community.

Albury’s public stormwater system handles stormwater from road reserves, parks, drainage reserves, drainage easements and some private properties. The infrastructure includes pits, pipes, channels and kerbs and gutters.

We are responsible for managing stormwater in the local government area, except for state roads and the rail corridor. We keep records of all parts of the public stormwater system and can provide details on request. We don’t keep records of private stormwater systems.

The public stormwater system discharges to several catchment areas that drain to the Murray River. We also manage these catchments and floodplains.

Why stormwater is a problem

Rainfall runoff from your roof and land collects on driveways, roads and footpaths and flows from saturated gardens, fields and subdivision sites into the Council stormwater system and out into the Murray River. Along the way it crosses different surfaces and can collect various pollutants – sediment, exposed soil, oil and grease from driveways and roads, leaves and animal manure from gutters, and chemicals from gardens.

All this exposure to contamination means that stormwater can harm the quality of water in the catchment and the Murray River downstream of Albury. It can also damage ecosystems in and around the Murray.

What we’re doing about it

Our policies and guidelines to manage stormwater and reduce its effects on the environment and residents are:

Soil and Water Management Policy

Consolidated Guidelines in Erosion and Sediment Control for Subdivisions, Building Sites, Riparian Zones and Council Assets Work Sites

Engineering Guidelines for Subdivisions and Development Standards for Stormwater Drainage Design

Report blockages or request maintenance

We carry out regular maintenance work on the stormwater system. Typically we clean pits twice a year, but we clean pits that are known to block, such as those in areas with lots of trees, once a fortnight. We regularly inspect other components, such as pipes and channels, and clean them when necessary.

To report a blockage or request maintenance contact:

Phone: 02 6023 8111

Contact us Online

Homeowner Responsibilities

It’s important for you to manage stormwater on your land to avoiding damaging your neighbour’s property as well as your own.

What you need to do

As a property owner, you are responsible for maintaining stormwater pipes, gutters, downpipes, gully pits and any other component of a drainage system related to your house or any other structure on the premises (shed, garage etc.). All of these elements need to be in good condition and comply with our requirements. This includes any connection to the city stormwater system.

To avoid damaging your own or a neighbour’s property, you must make sure that your property’s stormwater system is connected to a legal point of discharge – either the public drainage system (including roadside kerbs and gutters) or an inter-allotment drainage system (within dedicated easements). If you are redirecting and/or concentrating stormwater flows on your property, you need to collect them and direct them to a legal point of discharge.

Most importantly, stormwater must not be connected to the sewer. You can be fined for breaching this or any other regulatory requirement to do with stormwater management.

Technical requirements

The requirements for stormwater management can be complicated. If you’re in any doubt, ask a licensed plumber to help you understand the rules and confirm that your property complies with them.

Technical details are in:

  • the Building Code of Australia – technical standards for all aspects of building
  • Volume 3 of the National Construction Code – plumbing and drainage requirements for stormwater
  • Australian Standard AS/NZS 3500.3 Plumbing and Drainage – requirements for collecting roof water and surface water and discharging it through underground pipes to legal points of discharge.

New connections

If the property slopes to the road, the connection is normally to the roadside kerb and gutter. Any new connection across a Council footpath to the gutter needs approval from Council.

If the property slopes away from the road, the connection is normally to an easement draining through neighbouring properties to the public drainage system. In this case the owner is responsible for negotiating with the neighbouring owners to establish an easement. A drainage easement generally includes a drainage pipe and may also include an overland flow path.

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