Stinky situation for Woodbridge Estate residents

Shannon Toomey moved into Woodbridge Estate, Angle Vale, five months ago and has found himself in a bit of a stink.

Most days a community waste collection tank that services approximately 40 houses in the estate, is opened and emptied, the foul smell emitted entering nearby homes.

Mr Toomey’s brand-new home is located only five metres from the outlet and he says when the tank is opened, sometimes twice a day, the smell is ‘unbearable’.

The tank servicing the area was always meant to be temporary, a larger tank to be installed further south along Heaslip Road away from properties, with the development to be connected to mains sewerage by 2021.

“If we had have known this we wouldn’t have built on this block,” Mr Toomey said.

“We come home from work and we know the tank has been opened as the smell has settled in our house.

“Our toilets make a gurgling sound when the tank is nearing capacity.”

Mr Toomey contacted his local councillor, Clint Marsh, who brought the issue to City of Playford Council.

“Council staff have been proactive and conducted a site visit to inspect the complaint and provide information to residents,” Cr Marsh said.

Mr Toomey was instructed to put his concerns in writing and forward to SA Water, council staff informing him they have approached the developer, Actium Land Developments, questioning when the larger tank will be installed.

Mr Toomey, however, is concerned the relocation of the waste outlet will not occur within the designated time frame given to him of three to six months.

“Council have been very helpful with input and what direction to take,” said Mr Toomey.

“We’re at our wits end at how to get this problem solved.”

Cr Marsh has committed to continue to lobby the City of Playford to liaise with SA Water to seek an appropriate solution to this issue.

“Ultimately, I want to see the developer, SA Water and City of Playford engage with one another ASAP and relocate the waste outlet much sooner,” he said.

A City of Playford spokesman said council understands the sewer system’s capacity is causing some discomfort for residents of Woodbridge Estate.

“SA Water, which manages the infrastructure, has been informed of those concerns and has advised that a larger system with more capacity will ultimately be installed,” the spokesperson stated.

“The timing of this upgrade is in the hands of SA Water.”

An SA Water spokesperson said the organisation is working to connect properties in the new residential development area in Angle Vale to their sewer network, which will occur when a minimum amount of flow into the network is reached.

At present there are not enough occupied properties in the area which is required for it to operate efficiently, maintaining environmental standards.

“Based on forecast population growth, we expect to be able to begin construction next year,” the company said.

“Until this time, we are tankering sewage around four times a week between the area’s sewerage outlet and our Bolivar Wastewater Treatment Plant.

“We temporarily increased this frequency over the recent holiday period, due to increased flows.

“We will shortly begin construction of a new tankering facility, which will cater for up to 250 customers.

“This will become operational in the coming months.

“We will continue to update the local community and relevant stakeholders, including the City of Playford, as works progress.

“We are also working with the tankering operator on available options to reduce odour.”

Greg White of Actium Land Developments said the current waste system has been built according to engineering plans approved by SA Water and City of Playford Council, receiving a Section 51 Clearance, meaning it has been constructed correctly.

“We held numerous conversations with SA Water last year who advised that an upgrade would be required by mid-March, 2019.”

Mr White said Cr Marsh had been in contact with their project manager relaying the concerns of Mr Toomey, and Actium Land Developments are now working to speed up the process of installation of the new system which requires approval from both SA Water and council.

The engineering plans for the new, larger system has been submitted to SA Water and council for approval.

“Once all the approvals are received from council, work will then be given to contractors to commence working on the new tank,” Mr White said.

“We will try to bring the installation closer.”

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