The CRCWSC Tranche 2 Research Program is continuing as planned, and we successfully delivered all milestones and deliverables for Q4. The research portfolio continues to engage with participants and external stakeholders to find new linkages between industry and research.
Strong progress across the projects
IRP1 WSC visions and transition strategies
- We completed the project in 2018, with the successful co-development of visions and transition strategies for six cities around Australia.
- These cities are now actively working to implement their transition strategies. For example, Perth’s Water Sensitive Transition Network is progressing the priority actions articulated in its Implementation Plan; the City of Gold Coast has released its transformative Water Strategy after wide and overwhelmingly supportive public consultation; and key agencies in Bendigo have signed a Memorandum of Understanding committing to collectively advancing that city's water sensitive transition.
- We are working with partners to adapt and apply the transition dynamics framework and process methodology for different types of situations and organisational contexts.
Look out for: In the next two quarters, we plan to finalise and release three reports covering the developed process methodology, principles for engaging citizens in WSC transitions, and a comparative analysis of the participating city results.
Katie Hammer (firstname.lastname@example.org) is happy to answer your questions.
IRP2 Comprehensive economic evaluation framework
- We completed five full-day training sessions around the country on the updated INFFEWS Benefit Cost Analysis Tool (WP3), and we’re now incorporating your further suggestions into the tool. The next updated version will be ready by the end of the year.
- We have updated the INFFEWS Value Tool (WP2) so it now incorporates more than 1,500 values. We are presently delivering national training sessions on how to use this tool and conduct benefit transfer.
- We’ve engaged with 174 organisations and about 490 individuals as part of (WP1) stakeholder engagement and training.
- We have recently published a case study report that applied the Value Tool to assess the non market benefits of WSUD in a residential development: Belle View case study.
- The economic value of urban heat mitigation (WP6) research is complete, and those interested in the results should read the two recently published reports: Economic Value of UHI mitigation – biophysical aspects and the Economic Value of UHI mitigation – economic analysis.
- We held a seminar in Perth, in conjunction with the Water Services Association of Australia (WSAA), to demonstrate the link between water sensitive cities and health outcomes. The seminar was well attended and included a workshop at the end to discuss how the results could be used in the transition towards more water sensitive, liveable and resilient cities.
Look out for: Two new case studies are nearing completion, with reports due for publication within the next three to four months. We are also planning across multiple states early next year to develop an in-depth understanding of funding opportunities for water sensitive cities projects (WP4).
Tamara Harold (email@example.com) is happy to answer your questions.
IRP3 Guiding Integrated Urban and Water Planning
- Chris Chesterfield has recorded a podcast, available online, that discusses guiding integrated urban and water planning (WP1).
- The team has continued to progress work on framework development and a first draft of the collaborative governance guidance for integrated urban and water planning was completed based on findings from academic literature, empirical interviews and internal (team) workshops (WP2).
- We completed a first draft literature review of integrated planning best practice and will continue to inform framework development as it is extended.
- The fourth and final workshop for the Brabham case study was recently conducted, exploring the planning considerations to promote alternative water servicing options for the Brabham development (WP3).
- We kicked off the Townsville case study in August, with the first workshop coming up in October.
Look out for: We plan to publish the Brabham case study outcomes by the end of the year.
Sylvia Tawfik (Sylvia.firstname.lastname@example.org) is happy to answer your questions.
IRP4 Achieving water sensitive outcomes for in-fill developments
- We’ve been refining the infill design typologies, continuing to develop performance indicators and using these to evaluate the water performance of these designs.
- We recently released a couple of discussion documents that help to design better infill developments, including the Infill typology catalogue (Draft for consultation) and the Infill Performance Evaluation Framework (Draft for consultation).
- We produced site-scale water performance and urban heat analysis of infill design typologies developed for the Salisbury case study in August, which compare how better designs can mitigate the adverse impacts of urban densification, compared with business as usual.
- Design work has continued on the Knutsford case study, with refinements to the dwelling and public space typologies.
- The project’s PhD students have completed their confirmation of candidature, which means they can progress their research and contribute to IRP4’s objectives.
Look out for: We are progressing the precinct-scale water performance and heat analysis of alternative infill scenarios for the Salisbury case and Q3.
Beata Sochacka (email@example.com) is happy to answer your questions.
IRP5 Guiding urban water management in areas of the Swan Coastal Plain that experience high seasonal groundwater
- We have recently kicked off Stage 2 of the last of our integrated research projects, which aims to improve how we manage water in urban developments affected by high groundwater in the Swan Coastal Plan of Western Australia.
- The project, led by UWA’s Professor Carolyn Oldham, will run from this September until December 2021 and is co-funded by the Department of Communities, WA Water Corporation and the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation.
- We’re currently convening a Project Steering Committee to oversee the project’s execution.
- The project will convene an independent expert panel, chaired by Greg Claydon, to review the best available scientific knowledge and engage with industry to develop guidance for consistent processes, methodology and guidelines, to aid development in high groundwater areas (WP1).
- It will also develop a field validation dataset from WA’s Swan Coastal Plain (at multiple scales) to test and refine the inherent assumptions of the guidance (WP2 and WP3).
Look out for: The expert panel will be commencing its engagement with Perth’s industry stakeholders over the coming months. In the meantime, the IRP5 Stage 1 report is due for release this quarter, which reviews the knowledge gaps and uncertainties that have implications for urban development in areas of high groundwater.
Samantha Lemons (firstname.lastname@example.org) is happy to answer your questions.
Tools and Products (TAP)
- We have improved the usability and stability of the Scenario Tool by expanding its visualisation options and adding a spatial query function, as well as adding documentation (e.g. FAQ page, tutorials) to its Help section (TAP 2 and 3).
- We ran the first two of our TAP training webinars, showcasing the Scenario Tool capabilities, which were well received by the more than 50 online attendees. The webinar content is available on the tool’s help page (TAP4).
- The TAP team is working with the IRP teams to identify and progress opportunities for integrating research outputs into the Scenario Tool to help it become a coherent and flexible tool for analysing the multiple water sensitive benefits of diverse urban development and water servicing scenarios.
- We have developed a prototype software version of the Transition Dynamics Framework. This will ultimately support the Transitions Platform (TAP1) to integrate transition data (including WSC Index benchmarking results, WSC visions, TDF results and management actions) to support stakeholders to plan and actively monitor their WSC transition.
Look out for: Release of a new beta version Scenario Tool module (the Air-temperature Response to Green/blue-infrastructure Evaluation Tool (TARGET) is imminent. A beta version of the Scenario Tool’s integrated functionality is planned for release in Q3 for industry testing and feedback. This will include the data and model platform and user interface, algorithms to generate urban form and green infrastructure, and models to assess the urban water cycle model and urban heat.
Stefan Kitanovic (Stefan.Kitanovic@monash.edu) is happy to answer your questions.
Enthusiastic industry collaboration
We can see increased demand for research outputs as high numbers of our participants enthusiastically sign up to attend workshops, trainings, and other CRCWSC events. Our ongoing collaboration between industry participants and project teams continues to ensure the valuable research–industry interactions keep evolving for the remainder of Tranche 2.
Better access to outputs
As the research program continues, it’s clear we need a coherent organising framework to make it easier for industry to access and activate our many products and tools. So, we’ve started work on developing the WSC Platforms—the Transitions Platform, City Shaping Platform and Solutions Platform—to fulfil this purpose. These WSC Platforms will take greater shape over the coming six months.