Kent Street Weir refurbishment
The Department of Water, in conjunction with the Department of Parks and Wildlife and City of Canning, is upgrading the Kent St Weir in 2017.
The refurbishment will cost $4.4M (excl. GST) and will take approximately 4 to 6 months.
Why does it need fixing?
Kent St Weir is safe for the public to use; however, the reinforced concrete piers are in poor condition and the weir is nearing the end of its structural life.
In addition, the current configuration means that the process of installing and removing the weir boards each year is labour intensive.
There have also been an increasing number of tidal intrusion over the last 10-15 years, in which saline water has flowed over the top of the weir boards and been trapped upstream of the weir.
Aims of the refurbishment
The upgrade will incorporate a new bridge that will provide access for pedestrians, cyclists, and other members of the public.
The refurbishment will also:
- Extend the life of the weir by approximately 50 years
- Ensure safety for users of the weir, and government staff who operate it
- Maintain water quality for the freshwater ecosystems upstream of the weir
- Allow for the installation of a fish ladder
- Upgrade to automated management of the weir boards (or gates).
About the weir
Kent St Weir was constructed in 1926 across the Canning River, connecting the localities of Wilson and Ferndale in the City of Canning. The weir is designed to maintain an upstream freshwater pool by preventing backflow from the saline water of the Swan Estuary further downstream.
The heritage-listed structure is owned by the Department of Water and operated by the Department of Parks and Wildlife. It is 52 m long, and has undergone a number of reconstructions in its lifetime, with most recent civil works occurring in 1962.
It is highly valued by the local community and forms an integral linkage between Kent Street Weir Park and Canning River Regional Park.
1. Will I be able to use the bridge during refurbishment?
The Department of Water are liaising with a wide variety of users of the Kent St Weir to ensure minimal disruption to daily activities during the construction phase.
During construction, a temporary bridge will be available for public use, and will be suitable for pedestrians, cyclists and wheelchairs. Access across the river may be restricted at times in the interests of public safety. An alternative crossing is available upstream at Greenfield St Footbridge.
Kayaking and canoeing activities
Kayaking and canoeing activities will be impacted during the construction period. It is expected that there may be limited access to the Canning River at Kent St Weir.
Alternative locations from which to access the Canning River during the construction period have been examined in conjunction with the local community.
You may wish to consider entering and exiting the river at Riverton Jetty Park, Riverton Canoe Launch or Bywater Way (Wilson) downstream of the weir, or at Mason’s Landing and Hester Park upstream of the weir (see map of alternate exit and entry points for kayaks and canoes).
Canoeists and kayakers will be able to proceed up and downstream at Kent St Weir, however will need to carry their water craft approximately 280m around the construction site to do so.
2. Will there be any environmental impacts?
The Department of Water has developed an Environmental Management Plan, which aims to minimise any negative environmental impacts resulting from the works.
The refurbishment will retain the concrete sill, but demolish the above-water elements, and replace them with new piers and a walkway over the existing substructure. As such there will be minimal disturbance to the river bed and water turbidity.
3. Has there been consultation with traditional owners?
Yes. Following consultation with local Aboriginal elders, the Department of Water has received approval to undertake the refurbishment works under Section 18 of the Aboriginal Heritage Act 1972, subject to a number of conditions.
4. Will everything return to normal once the works are finished?
Yes. Normal recreational activities at Kent St Weir will resume once the works are completed.
5. What will the new bridge look like?
The replacement bridge will be wider than the current bridge (2.4m compared with the current 1.9m), and there will be two viewing platforms, one looking upstream and one looking downstream. The overall design is consistent with other architectural features of the Canning River Regional Park.
The new bridge will continue to allow for pedestrian and cyclist use. No vehicle access will be provided.
6. Where is the project up to?
The contract to undertake the works was awarded to Ertech Pty Ltd.
Works commenced on 1 May 2017. Sheet piling has been installed, and the demolishment of the existing piers and walkway has commenced. Work is being undertaken between 7:00am – 7:00pm Monday–Saturday.
The Canning River Café, Canning River Eco Education Centre and other amenities surrounding the weir will remain open throughout the construction period.
Excess water onsite
Winter rainfall, combined with river flow restrictions at the weir as part of the refurbishment works, has caused inundation of the local floodplain and intermittent flooding of surrounding footpaths.
As a result, we will now be undertaking a staged development where the southern portion of the cofferdam has been opened. This is to allow more water to flow downstream over the winter months. During this phase the majority of the bridge, fishway and new automated weir gates will be installed.
Once this stage is completed, the cofferdam will be reinstalled, and the remainder of the bridge, fishway and new automated weir gates will be completed.
For the duration of the works, please be aware that water may be on the paths during heavy rainfall events, particularly on the southern side of the river, and you may wish to consider an alternative route during these times.
The nearest crossing is Greenfield Street Bridge.
Please note the temporary bridge was closed to facilitate the opening of the southern portion of the cofferdam, however the bridge has been reopened.
Schedule and milestones
We will keep this website updated with any changes to this schedule.
|Milestones||Scheduled commencement dates||Scheduled completion dates|
|Construction site established||Early May 2017||Early May 2017|
|Install sheet piling||Early June 2017||Late June 2017|
|Install temporary walkway||Late May 2017||Early June 2017|
|Demolish existing piers and walkway||Late June 2017||Mid July 2017|
|Open southern section of the cofferdam||7 August 2017||10 August 2017|
|Build majority of new bridge, install fishway and new weir gates||Mid August 2017||Mid September 2017|
|Reinstall 10m portion of sheet piling||Mid September 2017||Mid September 2017|
|Build final section of new bridge, fishway and new weir gates||Mid September 2017||Early October 2017|
|Remove temporary sheet piles||Late October 2017||Late October 2017|
|Remove temporary walkway||Early November 2017||Early November 2017|
|Remove site fencing||Mid November 2017||Mid November 2017|
|Project completion||Late November 2017||Late November 2017|
7. How do I keep informed of what’s happening?
In November 2016 the Department of Water sent over 7800 letters about the upgrade to residents in suburbs surrounding Kent Street Weir including Wilson, Cannington, Ferndale, Lynwood and Riverton, and a second letter to approximately 130 residents living in the immediate vicinity of the weir in March 2017.
We held a community information morning at the weir, and have promoted the works through community newspapers and local businesses such as the Canning River Café and the Canning River Eco Education Centre.
We have installed two large signs at either end of the bridge, and a further six signs at various canoe entry points along the Canning River including Shelley Beach Park, Riverton Jetty Park, Riverton Canoe Launch, Bywater Way, Mason’s Landing and Hester Park.
We have engaged with over 25 stakeholder groups leading up to the works, including WestCycle, Canoeing WA, environmental groups, private businesses and schools who use the site. We continue to work closely with the City of Canning and the Department of Parks and Wildlife in delivering the upgrade.
If you would like to keep informed on a regular basis, you can subscribe for email updates by sending a request to email@example.com.