Urban Utilities has been exploring opportunities to improve wet weather management at Cannery Creek, a suburban waterway in the Northgate/Banyo catchment, through nature-based solutions. Nature-based solutions are at the heart of the way forward.

What we want to achieve
  • Reduce uncontrolled on property wet weather overflows
  • Manage risk to public in waterways to protect current uses
  • Deliver better environmental outcomes
  • Deliver all these with lower community costs
We have explored two possible solutions: a traditional ‘grey infrastructure’ approach of building larger, more expensive pipes and a nature-based solution in the form of constructed wetlands that would naturally treat the overflow water before entering the creek.

The nature-based approach would achieve the same customer overflow, public health and environmental outcomes as the traditional solution but at a significantly lower cost.


In 2019 Urban Utilities formed a Community Planning Team (CPT) made up of 23 self-nominated participants.

Collectively, the group represents a diverse demographic cross-section of the local area.

Our aim was to involve the community early in the process to help us design the most effective and efficient solution to wet weather overflows into Cannery Creek.

We also engaged external subject matter experts, covering topics such as sewer network upgrade options and costs, public health risk assessments, hydrodynamic modelling and water sensitive urban design.

The CPT also worked with landscape architects and stormwater treatment specialists to co-design the creek corridor they would like to see.

After several workshops and site visits in 2019/20, the CPT put forward a recommendation that Urban Utilities pursue a nature-based solution in the form of constructed wetlands.

Overall, the CPT provided overwhelmingly positive feedback on the engagement process, feeling they had been listened to and given a valuable opportunity to contribute to the recommended solution.

The Urban Utilities project team found the project similarly rewarding, achieving a clear understanding of the community’s needs and expectations.

The recommendations from the CPT will inform the development of the concept plans for the Cannery Creek Sewer Upgrade.

Next Steps

In February 2021 the project gained endorsement by the Urban Utilities board to progress to the next stage of works, best summarised as detailed design.

An Urban Utilities project team is scoping out the works to confirm the cost and method of the project delivery.

Over the next 12 months, Urban Utilities and our delivery partner Fulton Hogan expect to complete many of the on-site investigations, such as land surveying, soil/underground condition analysis and water quality sampling.

These investigations will run in parallel with work to secure land access, planning and environmental approvals, which are key to the project proceeding.

In the meantime, you will see teams on the ground periodically surveying, drilling and collecting samples.

From Monday, 11 October 2021, Urban Utilities’ delivery partner Fulton Hogan will start borehole/soil drilling, underground utilities identification and land surveying activities at a number of locations along Cannery Creek between Earnshaw Road and Southern Cross Way. 

These investigations will run in parallel with work to secure land access, planning and environmental approvals, which are key to the project proceeding. 

The work will be carried out between 6.30am and 6.30pm, Monday to Friday, and is expected to take up to six weeks to complete, weather and site conditions permitting. 

Cannery Creek - investigation area for the nature-based wet weather solution

What to expect during the borehole / soil drilling investigations: 

  • Noise from increased vehicle movements and machinery, including a truck-mounted drill rig and vacuum extraction trucks.
  • Traffic controllers will assist machinery access via Nudgee Road and Southern Cross Way, when required.
  • Jim Soorley Bikeway:  some borehole locations will require temporary access across the bikeway. Traffic controllers will use a stop/go system for the occasions when vehicles are required to cross the bikeway.  This will ensure all bikeway users and our workers remain safe.

Thank you for your patience during these investigation works.

If you have any questions about the above activities, please contact Gail from Fulton Hogan on 1800 573 215 or email

Click here for the project fact sheet or sign up for email updates on the proposed Cannery Creek sewer upgrade project. 

If you would like more information about the proposed project: