South Para Reservoir

September 19, 2018

Adjourned debate on motion of Hon. J.S.L. Dawkins:

 

That this council—

1. Acknowledges the 60th anniversary of the South Para Reservoir, which is the most recent and largest of the reservoirs in the South Para system;

2. Highlights the importance of water storage to supply urban and industrial areas;

3. Takes note of the 60th anniversary to be celebrated with a book launch, bus tours and barbecue to be held at the Senior Citizens/RSL Hall, Williamstown, on Saturday 13 and Sunday 14 October 2018 from 11am;

4. Recognises the enormous contribution to the construction of the reservoir by migrants from other countries and the community feeling, which quickly developed amongst the families which lived on site; and

5. Acknowledges the work of the organising committee and the sponsors of the event SA Water, Williamstown Hotel, Williamstown Post Office and Smith Bros.

 

The Hon. J.A. DARLEY (16:49): I do want to speak on this particular motion. I rise in support of this motion and have a short words about the South Para Reservoir. The South Para Reservoir is the second largest reservoir in South Australia, and whilst it has a capacity of about 45,330 megalitres, it only fills completely about every five years due to its size and location in the catchment area. Together with Kangaroo Creek and Myponga, it is one of the last three major reservoirs constructed in this state.

 

Construction on the South Para Reservoir began in 1949 in response to the increase in population as a result of migration following the Second World War. As such, as the Hon. John Dawkins outlined in his motion, there was a lot of input from migrants on the construction of the reservoir. Construction was not completed until 1958 due to the increase in demand on resources and limited funding in the post-war boom.

 

I remember the reservoir fondly because I made several trips to see the progression of this major project from 1954 to 1958 when I was working as a junior draftsman in the design branch of the engineering and water supply department. I also remember visiting the construction sites of the Mannum-Adelaide Pipeline at this time and witnessing the early stage of the development of what was known as the new city north of Adelaide, later to be named Elizabeth.

 

In addition to the many others who contributed to the construction of the South Para Reservoir we should acknowledge the work done by the then engineering chief, Mr Julian Dridan; the engineer for construction, Mr Gilbert Poole; the engineer for design, Mr Harold Beaney; and the resident engineer in charge of the project, Mr Len Burnett. I thank the Hon. John Dawkins for moving this motion and wish every success for the 60th anniversary celebrations.

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