Maintenance access passage review

We are always looking for ways to improve the way we work and deliver value to the community. We have recently reviewed our side access requirements for blocks that contain Icon Water sewerage infrastructure in their backyards.

In the interest of ensuring we have clear and safe access to maintain and repair sewerage assets in backyards, construction is restricted within these access passages. 

Improvements in technology and work practices mean that we can now safely access assets with a reduced set of access widths. For most developments the new requirement ranges between 1.8-2. metres, with complex cases (2-3% of all developments) assessed on an individual basis. Previously we have required an access passage of between 2.2-3 metres to ensure that we can safely access this infrastructure.

We are seeking to update the reduced requirement with a change to Appendix O of our service and installation rules. This will allow for increased construction on individual blocks and allow more space for the community to use and enjoy.  

For more information on why we have made these changes and what we considered in the process, please see our summary document. Alternatively, full details are available in our technical paper.

Consultation performed 

Consultation was officially performed between 3 May and 31 May 2019. Feedback received included: 

• Support for Icon Water’s proposed changes.

• Requested flexibility for future design and development of access routes, particularly in greenfield areas.

• A general desire for Icon Water to continually re-assess the rules to see if further land could be freed going forward.

Next steps

Building applications received from 15 July 2019 will be assessed against the new requirements.

Our service and installation rules and building approval guides will be updated in the coming months - we will keep interested parties up to date. 

It is expected that this review of the maintenance access passage will be followed by reviews of other technical standards and requirements. We are committed to working with the community and look forward to providing further opportunity for our professional customers and stakeholders to inform future changes.