Melbourne Water is planning renewal works on the M41 water main.

The water main is almost 100 years old and needs to be replaced so that we can continue to efficiently supply drinking water to over 350,000 residents living in Melbourne's inner suburbs.

What’s involved?

The existing alignment of the M41 water main travels from Merri Creek in Northcote, through Edinburgh Gardens, and under Queens and Alexandra Parades to George Street, Fitzroy. The route follows George Street to Victoria Parade, and then runs through the Fitzroy Gardens to Wellington Parade in East Melbourne.

It is expected that construction on the water main will begin in late 2017 and will take approximately 18 months to two years to complete.

Project benefits

Once complete, the project will enable Melbourne Water to:

  • reduce water losses and disruption to supply from leaks
  • increase capacity within the supply network
  • continue to supply high quality, safe and reliable drinking water
  • This project contributes to Melbourne Water’s strategic vision of ‘Enhancing Life and Liveability’ in the greater Melbourne region.

    Working with our stakeholders

    Melbourne Water has been working with key stakeholders including local business, VicRoads, City West Water, City of Melbourne and City of Yarra in the planning phase of the project.

    We’ll continue to speak and work with the relevant people throughout each stage of the project.

    Community engagement

    In addition to consulting with key stakeholders while developing the alignment for the new water main, we have been speaking with the local community about the design and other social and environmental considerations, technical requirements and project costs.

    The complexity of other factors, such as other underground services means that we have not provided the community with an opportunity to choose the alignment.

    Our recent community information sessions held at the Fitzroy Town Hall and North Fitzroy library in August gave the local community an opportunity to speak to the team about the project, and provide feedback about our preferred alignment. We spoke to over 50 people at the sessions about parking and traffic management, local access, property condition surveys and potential noise and vibration impacts during the works period.

    View a summary of the feedback

    We’d like to thank those who took the time to come along to the sessions to speak with us.

    The feedback we received will help shape our approach to construction once a contractor to complete the works has been appointed towards the end of 2017.


    We understand and share the value the community places on flora and fauna.

    We're committed to protecting the local area, in particular the mature elm trees in Edinburgh Gardens. We aim to do this with the help and input of the community and environmental specialists, as well as by implementing strict management plans.

    As the existing water main runs through Edinburgh Gardens, we’ve planned an alignment for the new main that will minimise impacts to the park, avoiding the removal of any historic elm trees.

    We'll continue to work closely with the local community at each stage of the project to ensure we meet our environmental commitments.

    Have your say

    We want to hear from the community about what’s important to you, what you want to see in the area after construction, and where you’d like to see improvements made in the future.

    Have your say by using our interactive map below, phoning on 1800 316 713 or by email. We’ll consider all comments and feedback and will work with the local community and key stakeholders where we can to take these on board.

    ____existing M41 water main

    Please show us what is important to you in the area and what you would like to see in the future. NOTE: the map shows the location of the existing water main - not the alignment for the new water main.

    Community Engagement

    You talked, we listened

    We've been engaging with the community since December 2016.

    This refers to engagement undertaken in Fitzroy North, Fitzroy and East Melbourne.

    Please note: It is not expected that water supply to households will be interrupted as part of the M41 construction works.

    Next steps

    A contractor for the detailed design will be appointed in coming months, with works to begin in late 2017.

    We will continue to engage with the community, key stakeholders and local businesses throughout this process and as the project progresses.