Beattie St Stormwater Channel No 15

  • Number
    4570329
  • Other name
    Beattie St SWC No 15
  • Primary address

    153, Robert St. to Beattie St. Rozelle/ Balmain, . NSW
    LGA: Leichhardt
    LGA region: Sydney
    DUAP region: Sydney South

  • Owner
    Sydney Water
  • Current use
    Stormwater Channel
  • Former use
    Stormwater Sewer
  • Item type
    Built
  • Item group
    Utilities - Drainage
  • Item category
    Storm Water Drain
  • Curtilage/Boundary
    The curtilage includes the stormwater channel bed, walls and coping as shown on the curtilage plan. The visual curtilage is limited as the channel is predominantly underground but includes a small section of the channel which is open between Roberts Road and Parson Street.
  • AMG easting
    337002364
  • AMG northing
    6260981168
  • Statement of significance
    Beattie Street SWC is one of a group of the first nine purpose built stormwater drains to be constructed in Sydney in the 1890's. Prior to this period the watercourses which served to carry stormwater were entirely in their natural state and were receptacles of sewage from the large population which had settled in the suburbs. In 1890 the then Secretary (Minister) for Public Works, the Hon. Bruce Smith, MLA., appalled at the extremely unhealthy conditions prevailing at the time, proposed a separate system of stormwater drains be built to help alleviate the problem. By 1897 nine had been built, including Beattie Street, which was completed in 1893. Beattie Street SWC is of heritage significance because it is a good example of one of the earliest stormwater channels and additionally it helped improve public health in the 1900's. The operational curtilage of Beattie Street SWC includes the channel bed, walls and coping. The visual curtilage of the channel will vary along the channel length depending on surrounding landuses. The visual curtilage is limited by the fact that the stormwater channel is located predominantly below ground. A small section of the channel is open between Roberts Road and Parson Street. The open section of the channel can only be observed from the roadway and is flanked by industrial properties.
  • Endorsed significance
    Local
  • Designer
    Public Works Department
  • Builder
    Public Works Department contract
  • Year completed
    1893
  • Circa
    No
  • Physical description
    This stormwater channel which commands an area of about 72 hectares all within the municipality of Leichhardt proceeds in a north-westerly direction from its outlet in White Bay upstream to its termination in Beattie Street, Balmain. From the outlet it extends immediately west to Roberts Road, thence north-westerly, crossing Mansfield Road, Goodsir and Reynolds Streets to Beattie Street, near Lawson Street. It drains an area predominantly on the western side of Whites Bay. It is bounded on the south by Weston Road and Roberts Street, on the east by Batty Street and on the west by Darling Street. The main channel was constructed by PWD in 1893 under Government Contract No.68. This section extends from the outlet upstream to the termination point in Beattie Street, Balmain. The channel size ranges from 18' 2" x 4' 6" open at the downstream end to 3' 3" x 2' 4" open at the upstream end. An amplification section which extends from Parsons Street, Balmain to the termination point was carried out by the board in 1935. The channel size in the amplification ranges from 42" circular to 30" circular. There are no branches attached to this system.
  • Modifications made
    In 1954 the Maritime Services Board carried out works to the system to provide a new outlet under M.S.B plan A1/517. The section represents an extension downstream of the original channel to give a new outlet into White Bay. The stormwater system today remains as it was in 1954 except for some minor works by Leichhardt Council to their own stormwater system.
  • History
    Prior to 1890 the watercourses which served to carry stormwaters were almost entirely in their natural state. The extremely unhealthy conditions prevailing during this time led the Secretary (ie. Minister) of Public Works of the time, the Hon. Bruce Smith MLA., to propose a separate system of stormwater channels to be built in order to achieve sanitary conditions. He believed a stormwater system would in part relieve the dreadful state and would be able to be constructed much faster than a separate foulwater sewer system. By 1897 nine stormwater drains had been built in accordance with this proposal. These were Beattie Street SWC, Dobroyd SWC, Rushcutters Bay SWC, Hawthorne Canal, Homebush Creek SWC, North Sydney SWC, Wentworth Park SWC, Munni Street Erskineville SWC and Iron Cove Creek extension. The Beattie Street stormwater system was constructed in 1893 and then transferred from the Public Works Department (PWD) to the Board in 1898. In 1935 the system was amplified after a series of flooding events within the catchment. The amplification section was upstream of Parsons Street and was carried out by the PWD under the 'Depression Make Work Scheme'. In 1954 the channel outlet was extended downstream by the Maritime Services Board as part of the redevelopment of wharves in the White Bay area.
  • National
    Economy
  • State
    Technology
  • Local
    (none)
  • National
    Economy
  • State
    Health
  • Local
    Water Supply
  • National
    Economy
  • State
    Environment - cultural landscape
  • Local
    (none)
  • National
    Settlement
  • State
    Utilities
  • Local
    Drainage
  • Local description
    Relates to the planning, development, expansion and provision of drainage and stormwater services.
  • National
    Phases of Life
  • State
    Events
  • Local
    (none)
  • a) Historical
    The Beattie Street SWC is of particular historical significance as one of the first 9 stormwater drains built in the 1890''s (along with Dobroyd SWC, Rushcutters Bay SWC, Homebush Creek SWC, North Sydney SWC, Wentworth Park SWC, Munni Street Erskineville SWC, Hawthorne Canal and Iron Cove Creek extension) to alleviate the unsanitary health problems of the time.
  • c) Aesthetic
    The aesthetic significance of this SWC is not of particular importance.
  • d) Social
    The SWC greatly improved public health in its geographical area on an emergency basis until foulwater sewers were laid. Upsizing for flood protection came as a result of the Great Depression. It shows cooperation between Government, PWD, Council and the Health Department. The construction of this system was an important feature in reducing illness in the area and is likely to be valued by the general community for the function it serves.
  • e) Research
    The channel is a good example of PWD engineering construction techniques of the 1890's. The bridge at Parsons Street represents the transformation from open channel (unreinforced concrete) to enclosed pipeline, thus providing further example of the engineering technology of the time. It is one of the first canals built for the rational dispersal of stormwater and is tangible evidence of that historically successful method of collection and dispersal.
  • f) Rarity
    One of nine similar channels built around the 1890's in the Sydney Water system.
  • g) Representative
    Representative of a group of the first nine stormwater drains built in Sydney between 1890 and 1897. Representative of what became a standard method of stormwater collection.
  • Integrity assessment
    Considerably intact.
  • List name
    Heritage Act - s.170 NSW State agency heritage register
  • Reference number
    001489
  • Gazette number
    1234
  • Gazette page
    wert
  • Date listing listed
    01 January 2000
  • Title
    Sydney Water Heritage Study
  • Author
    Graham Brooks and Associates Pty Ltd
  • Published
    1996
  • Item reference number in study
  • Title
    Sydney Water Heritage Study
  • Author
    Graham Brooks and Associates Pty Ltd
  • Published
    1996
  • Item reference number in study
  • Beattie Street SWC - Looking towards Parsons Street. Walls have been raised on either side with brick and plastered brick.
    Beattie Street SWC - Looking towards Parsons Street. Walls have been raised on either side with brick and plastered brick.
    Created by: AWT ES&T
    Creation date: 05 June 2000
  • Beattie Street SWC - with Anzac Bridge & White Bay Power Station in background.
    Beattie Street SWC - with Anzac Bridge & White Bay Power Station in background.
    Created by: AWT ES&T
    Creation date: 05 June 2000
  • Beattie Street SWC - Looking south towards Roberts Street, with White Bay Power Station in background.
    Beattie Street SWC - Looking south towards Roberts Street, with White Bay Power Station in background.
    Created by: AWT ES&T
    Creation date: 05 June 2000
  • Beattie Street SWC - Looking towards Parsons Street. N.b elliptical shape passing under Parsons Street. Also 900mm amplification pipe & step holes on left hand wall.
    Beattie Street SWC - Looking towards Parsons Street. N.b elliptical shape passing under Parsons Street. Also 900mm amplification pipe & step holes on left hand wall.
    Created by: AWT ES&T
    Creation date: 05 June 2000
  • The physical curtilage plan for Beattie Street Stormwater Channel No.15.
    The physical curtilage plan for Beattie Street Stormwater Channel No.15.
    Created by: Sysdney Water
    Creation date: 26 May 2006
  • Data entry status
    Basic
  • Entered
    03 June 1998
  • Updated
    13 February 2014