Work on the $50 million expansion of Tamworth’s Chaffey Dam will soon be underway following the awarding of the contract to construction firm John Holland.


NSW Minister for Natural Resources, Lands and Water Kevin Humphries, Federal Minister for Agriculture and Member for New England Barnaby Joyce and Tamworth Regional Council today welcomed the awarding of the contract for the dam’s safety upgrade and augmentation by State Water Corporation.


The project will increase the storage’s capacity from 62,000ML to 100,000ML to secure the water supply for the city of Tamworth and Peel Valley Water Users.


Project funding includes $18.03 million towards the dam safety upgrade component from the NSW Government, and $31.781 million for augmentation which is funded by the Australian Government National Water Security Plan for Cities and Towns ($18.145 million), the NSW Government ($9.668 million) and Tamworth Regional Council ($3.968 million).


Mr Joyce said the signing of funding agreements was the result of funding partners the Commonwealth, NSW and local governments working with project managers State Water Corporation.


“The Chaffey upgrade has been identified as a priority water infrastructure project for the Australian Government through the recently established ministerial working group of which I was appointed Chair,” Mr Joyce said.


“The Australian Government is committed to ensuring there are viable future water supplies to meet the needs of growing populations such as Tamworth.”


Mr Humphries said the NSW Government is absolutely committed to improving regional infrastructure, making sure our vital dam infrastructure is both safe for the long-term  and delivers security of supply for both towns and water users.


“Minister for Primary Industries Katrina Hodgkinson, Member for Tamworth Kevin Anderson and I have worked closely with State Water and Tamworth Council and the Federal Government to see this project through to this important stage,” Minister Humphries said.


“I am very pleased that through the Chaffey Dam safety upgrade and augmentation upgrade the NSW Government is continuing its commitment to securing the region’s water supply.”


Tamworth Regional Council Deputy Mayor Russell Webb said Council had been a driving force in pursuing the project since inception.


“Council is well aware of how critical this augmentation project is for a viable Peel Valley irrigation industry and the long term security of Tamworth’s water supply.  The people of Tamworth and district are very eager for construction to start and I’m extremely pleased to see the contract awarded.”


Brett Tucker from State Water Corporation said construction would commence in the coming months and the project was expected to take around two years to complete.


“Construction will involve raising the dam wall with a reinforced earth embankment and 1.8 metre parapet wall and raising the morning glory spillway,” he said.


“The increased full supply level of the augmented dam will mean some roads, bridges and recreation facilities will need to be realigned or relocated.


“We have spoken to the community at length about this project through a comprehensive consultation process which will continue throughout construction to make sure any impacts are mitigated where possible.”


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The Nationals - For Regional Australia