Urban water design
Urban development, including residential, rural-residential, commercial and industrial developments and associated infrastructure, can have significant impacts on water resources. Additionally, water resources can have significant impacts on the location, design, form and function of urban developments. The Department of Water being the lead water resources manager in Western Australia has a responsibility to protect, conserve and manage water resources. The broader view whereby the department works within the Western Australian Planning Commission governance is described under Water and land use planning.
As part of fulfilling this responsibility, the department assesses water management strategies and plans prepared under the Better Urban Water Management process. The department also provides water management and design advice on development proposals, including the state government's strategic and special projects, and advocates for and engages with various stakeholders so that the developments:
- address applicable water resource management components, opportunities and issues (e.g. water service, stormwater/surface water and protection from flooding, groundwater, water quality, protection of receiving waters) with appropriate design and implementation plans, as early as possible in the project planning stages
- implement a water sensitive urban design approach
- design urban form and infrastructure and adopt appropriate construction practices that do not result in unacceptable impacts to water resources or unacceptable impacts from water resources on urban form and infrastructure
- recognise the need for site-specific solutions that include innovative approaches and appropriate non-structural and structural controls.
The department published the Water monitoring guidelines for better urban water management strategies and plans. These guidelines assist urban land developers to determine the pre- and post-development monitoring requirements of surface water and groundwater systems to support district water management strategies, local water management strategies or urban water management plans.
Some urban developments are located in areas with shallow groundwater. The process and considerations for a shallow groundwater management system are detailed in Water resource considerations when controlling groundwater levels in urban development.
Design of Public Open Space and water supply options for it is a significant issue with urban design. The Public Parkland Planning and Design Guide (WA) outlines how to achieve the best outcomes for planning and designing public parklands within the WA planning and water policy framework. The principles within the guide bring social, economic and environmental sustainability to the forefront of decision making.
Water sensitive design brochures
These brochures are available at WA.gov.au