Water Sensitive Road Design


We aim to sustainably manage water and protect water quality when constructing, operating and maintaining roads.

We do this by

  • best practice erosion and sediment management of construction sites
  • using alternative sources to potable (drinking-quality) waste in construction and maintenance activities, where possible
  • incorporating Water Sensitive Road Design (WSRD) into urban roadsides to protect receivng waterways.

This holistic approach to water management within VicRoads is described in our Integrated Water Management Guidelines. Please email environment@roads.vic.gov.au to request a copy.

Water Sensitive Road Design

Construction of bridge for Geelong Ring Road over Moorabool RiverWSRD protects receiving waterways by improving the quality of stormwater before it reaches waterways and bays. Treatment measures such as swales and bio-filtration systems remove pollutants from the road run-off before they reach receiving environments.

WSRD can be integrated into road project designs as a landscape feature. 

Erosion and Sediment Control

To protect Victoria's waterways, VicRoads carefully plans, designs and implements controls to avoid or mitigate the affects of soil erosion, sediment runoff and sediment deposits during the deliver of road projects.

To assist sediment control, we have developed the Temporary Sedimentation Basin Design Tool to provide a simple and conservative approach for the design of Temporary Sedimentation Basins. The tool ensures compliance with the State Environment Protection Policy (Waters of Victoria) and EPA Guidelines. Further information and guidance for its use is provided in the Help tab of the tool.

Sedimentation Basin Design Tool Ver 1-05 [XLS 1.1 Mb]

Water Reuse

Road construction activities such as dust suppression and material compaction require water. We are committed to minimising the use of potable water for all activities associated with the construction of the road network, its maintenance and operational activities.

An objective of our Sustainability and Climate Change Strategy 2010-2015 [PDF 1.5 Mb] is that by 2015, 80% (by volume) of all water used during road construction, and 40% of all water used for regional projects and maintenance, is non-potable.

Registering your non-potable water source

You can register your non-potable water source for use by VicRoads and our contractors. The water must be quality assessed before being placed on the register and updated if the quality changes.

Complete the relevant Expression of Interest (EOI) forms below to register your non-potable water:
EOI - Industry and Sewage Treatment Plants [DOC 768 Kb]
EOI - Quarries, Dams and Groundwater [DOC 768 Kb]

Non-potable water supply agreements

The supplier and purchaser of the non-potable water share responsibility for its supply and use. The supply agreement template below outlines each party's responsibilities. This agreement acts as a formal contract between the supplier, purchaser and VicRoads for the supply and use of the water.

Supply Agreement Template [PDF 810 Kb]

Environment Improvement Plan

Contractors who use non-potable water must complete an Environment Improvement Plan (EIP). An EIP helps manage risk associated with the transport, storage, handling and use of the non-potable water.

It considers the source and concentration of contaminants in the water, surrounding land use and safety of workers and the community. The EIP meets Victorian EPA requirements as well as the national guidelines for non-potable water use.

Complete the EIP template below if you use non-potable water. The template is in two sections, the first document is the EIP cover (in PDF) and the second is the content of the EIP (in Word format). Both sections need to be filled out, printed and collated into the one document, together with any attachments.