Waterway naturalisation

Waterway naturalisation (or waterway restoration, daylighting streams) is the process of converting drainage channels into a more naturalised state, typically mimicking to some extent the former history of the waterway. The degree of naturalisation varies between projects, particularly depending on the availability of space. Waterway naturalisation can provide a large number of benefits including water quality improvement, ecological restoration, flood mitigation, urban cooling and community recreation and amenity.

Small Creek Naturalisation


Transformation of 1.6km of existing concrete channel in a heavily urbanised catchment into a natural waterway. The project proactively engaged the local community to create a treasured environment.

Enhancing Our Dandenong Creek program


A collaborative approach with the local community resulted in a series of works to the urban waterway, including daylighting of a piped section of the creek.

Bannister Creek Living Stream

Western Australia

Naturalisation of a local creek produced demonstrated ecological and amenity benefits that led to an increase nearby property prices.

Sydney Water Bank Naturalisation

New South Wales

Naturalisation of 1.1km of riverbank along the Cooks River in Sydney involved demolition and replacement of steep, deteriorated concrete panels with more gently sloped river banks, stabilised with sandstone and more than 80,000 local native plants.

A new community at Officer


Collaborative planning and design delivered habitat-rich 100m wide waterway corridors which included 'eco-sponges' which hold and infiltrate stormwater runoff to minimise impacts on the waterway.

Last updated: 19th Oct 2018