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Council to trial water refill stations

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Blue Mountains City Council will enter into a partnership with Sydney Water to install eight water bubbler and refill stations to make tap water more accessible in popular public places.

“The water refill stations will help reduce the environmental impact of drinking bottled water by decreasing litter and the number of plastic bottles going to landfill,” Mayor Mark Greenhill said.

“Providing easy access to high quality tap water also gives adults and children a healthy alternative to sugary drinks.”

The pilot project will establish water refill stations at key locations across the City: Summerhayes, Winmalee; Lapstone Oval, Lapstone; Knapsack Park, Glenbrook; Glenbrook Park, Glenbrook; Pitt Park, Wentworth Falls; Maple Grove, Katoomba; Wentworth Falls Lake, Wentworth Falls; and Wilson Park, Wentworth Falls.

The locations for the pilot project have been selected based on the high community use and to represent a range of different public places, including sports grounds, play area and walking track heads. All of the sites have work currently underway or planned and require water related infrastructure such as aging bubblers, to be replaced. This will reduce installation costs to Council.

Each water refill unit is multi-functional, serving as a bubbler, bottle refill station and dog bowl at the base; are a simple, robust construction; and wheelchair accessible.

The Aquafil unit is used in a number of Sydney locations, most notably in Manly where it continues to be used along both the Corso and beachfront.

“Access to water in public places make cities more liveable,” Cr Greenhill said.

As part of the agreement with Sydney Water, Council becomes responsible for the installation, maintenance and water costs associated with the stations.

Council will monitor water use at each location. The Council will receive a report by mid-2019 identifying the costs and benefits from entering into the partnership, together with a review of future roll-out options.