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Wangaratta Growth Project

Wangaratta Growth Project

Information about how North East Water is addressing development growth and capacity challenges in Wangaratta.

We're working to manage accelerating development growth in Wangaratta, as well as the city's aging water and sewer infrastructure. In the past 3 years, there has been an unexpected and an unplanned for increase of 45% in development approvals.

This has had a major impact on existing infrastructure and capacity. As a result, approvals have been temporarily paused in selected growth areas.

Frequently asked questions

Why has there been an increase in development approvals?

Wangaratta is experiencing high growth due to recently rezoned areas.

Why has development been put on hold in some areas?

Accelerated residential development has resulted in our systems reaching capacity constraints ahead of previous high growth projections. Suspension is necessary to ensure our infrastructure does not harm the environment due to sewer capacity related spills.

Why is development not on hold in some areas?

This is limited to small lot count infill developments within the city which may be possible. The specific location and nature of each infill development requires a case by case assessment, as per the regular application process.

How would water and sewer infrastructure be impacted if no action is taken?

It is highly likely that aging infrastructure will fail.

When will the pause in development approvals be lifted?

Currently short and long term solutions are being planned. There is also early works about to occur to assist in relieving some of the current system capacity concerns. The short term plan is working to 0 to 3 year time-frame with the long term plan working to 5 years+. However there are opportunities for early engagement with North East Water on development applications to discuss options that may allow the hold to be lifted.

What is North East Water doing to address this issue?

A range of conventional and non-conventional solutions for the short and long term are being explored. Short term solutions have an objective of enabling housing development to recommence as soon as possible. Long term solutions will require major intergenerational asset investment that will enable unimpeded growth for many decades to come.

How long will it take for these solutions to be implemented?

While short terms solutions are likely within the next few years, long term solutions will take between 5 and 10 years to implement due to the complexity, scale and costs involved.

Is North East Water working with council to address this issue?

Both North East Water and council are working closely together to enable growth to progress. Recently an 8 week sprint project was facilitated by GHD to explore short term options.

Should North East Water have acted sooner to address this issue?

The historical growth data for Wangaratta has seen on average annual lot yields of approximately 120, this has increased to 180. These numbers have remained steady for the past 10 years. All North East Waters planning used the historical growth data. More recently growth has accelerated to 280, which represents 2x the historical growth rate.

Information session

Another online information session was held on Wednesday 9 March 2022 to provide an project update to Wangaratta developers, property developers, consultants, builders and real estate agents. A recording and transcript of the infomation sesssion is available to view below.

View presentation PDF View transcript

For further enquiries about this project, contact Rebecca Jhonston, Executive Planning & Infrastructure, via or 1300 361 622