The water pipeline that’s currently being built through the Blayney Shire area is giving a major boost to local infrastructure. 
Central Tablelands Water (CTW ) Chairman David Somervaille said the recent progress on building the pipeline is prompting local residents to ask questions about how the funding is being shared and what it will mean for the future of water use in the Blayney Shire area.
Mr Somervaille said the partnership between the NSW Government and local authorities was a fantastic opportunity to replacing ageing infrastructure.
“The new pipeline from Carcoar to Millthorpe will replace the existing pipeline used to supply water to Millthorpe,” Mr Somervaille said.
“This pipeline was due to be replaced in 11 years’ time and that would have cost CTW an estimated $13 million. Because of this funding partnership, CTW is getting around $15 million worth of new water infrastructure for its contribution of only $2.5m.
“We’re always planning for the future and this project has let CTW bring forward its capital works program by 10 to 12 years by replacing the water trunk mains between Millthorpe, Blayney and Carcoar.  This level of new infrastructure will be used every day to continue to provide a quality water supply to our consumers.
“This Project means Central Tablelands Water can operate the water supply network from Millthorpe, Blayney and Carcoar more efficiently and effectively. Water security for the community will be increased.”
CTW General Manager Gavin Rhodes said the new link between Blayney and Orange had also prompted discussion about the sharing of water between local communities.
“What’s being built is a two-way pipeline which will allow water to be transferred to either water supply network if and when there is an emergency water issue at either water filtration plant,” Mr Rhodes said.
 “The community of Orange will only be supplied water from CTW’s supply network during an emergency water situation, for example, if there’s a breakdown or malfunction at the Water Filtration Plant in Orange. There will be a formal Bulk Water Supply Agreement in place, that means that CTW will transfer water to Orange City Council at an agreed price, and vice versa.
“The same principle applies in reverse.  The pipeline will also deliver extra water if there’s a breakdown or failure of CTW’s raw water pipelines or power outages.
“I’ve also heard that people are wondering if local water restrictions will change. 
“The objective of CTW’s Water Restrictions policy is to manage demand during periods of water scarcity to ensure all customers have access to a secure water supply. Water restrictions for CTW customers will only be activated in line with CTW’s Water Restrictions Policy, irrespective of Orange being on water restrictions.  
“The CTW supply network and the Orange City Council water supply network will remain as separate, independent networks.”
The total estimated cost of the new pipeline project is $28.7 million. This is funded by:  NSW State Government - $21.21m  Orange City Council - $5m  CTW - $2.5m
The project is expected to be completed by the end of 2017.
Late last year, Leed Engineering & Construction was awarded the contract to design and construct the pipeline. The majority of the pipeline is being built in road corridors, with only small sections on private land.
The project received $21.21 million in funding from the NSW Government’s Restart NSW Water Security for Regions program, set up to improve water security and help communities prepare for further drought conditions.