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Illawarra-Shoalhaven Smart Water Management Project


Wollongong City Council

Illawarra Shoalhaven Region, New South Wales

Project stage

In progress


Start date: 15 March 2019
End date: 31 December 2020

Project value

Australian Government funding:


  • Kiama Council
  • Shellharbour City Council
  • Shoalhaven City Council
  • Lendlease Communities (Calderwood) Pty Ltd
  • Smart Infrastructure Facility University of Wollongong

Focus area

  • Innovation and economic development
  • Public safety (crime and disaster prevention and management)
  • Education and public health
  • Natural environmental data and measurement (air quality, dust, noise, waterways)

Project type

  • Disaster management
  • Community engagement
  • Public safety
  • Environmental monitoring

Technology type

  • Internet of Things
  • Data Management (Data platform, open data, data privacy and security, blockchains, standards)
  • Environmental sensors

Project summary

The Illawarra-Shoalhaven Smart Water Management project is using smart technology solutions and developing data analytics to respond to and improve storm-water management, water quality, flood mitigation and access to information to ensure community safety in flash flood events. This project is a regional collaboration between local government, tertiary and secondary education institutes and industry.

The challenge

Over the past 50 years the Illawarra-Shoalhaven has experienced 33 floods classiffied as serious to extreme due to the challenging and unique local topography. Stormwater management is a key responsibility for local governments and a major challenge to consider in planning for urban growth. Annually, significant investment is required to manage our waterways and install, renew and upgrade stormwater infrastruture to safely convey stormwater to local waterways while minimising the impact on water quality and the risk and impact of flooding.


The Smart Water Management project uses environmental sensors and data anlytics for improved stormwater management. The project applies smart solutions to detect culvert blockages; manage estuaries more effectively to reduce flooding; monitor water quality; and optimise the maintenance of Gross Pollutant Traps. The project will also develop a model that integrates sensor data to better predict flood risk with greater accuracy and timeliness for enhanced community safety.


With 85 percent of Australians living within 50km of coastal areas and waterways, these communities have resigned themselves to the realities of weather extremities such as flood and storms impacting their towns and businesses. The outcomes from this project can be shared with these communities across Australia to help improve community safety and stormwater management.


The project is currently in progress. Environmental sensors using cameras, LIDAR and ultrasonic waves are being installed throughout the region, as well as IoT gateways. The development of data analytics is underway.

Contact details

Name: Vanessa Vecovski, Smart Cities Coordinator Illawarra Shoalhaven
Phone: 04038483350