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Keeping Cowra’s water supply clean and crystal clear

Cowra Water Treatment Plant upgrade


Cowra Council


Cowra, NSW

About The Project

The Cowra Water Treatment plant was initially built in the 1930s and is the sole source of water for the Cowra township in Central West NSW. The ageing plant was not able to meet modern water quality standards or keep up with the demands of a growing population. 

CNF was commissioned to oversee the plant’s major upgrade including refurbishing the mixed media filters and dosing systems and completely automating the plant.

The major challenge was that the plant needed to be kept running at all times during the upgrade.  Any work done on the plant needed meticulous planning and had to be done without impacting on water quality or plant availability.

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Major Achievements

  • Ensured the treatment plant was kept fully operational and continued providing clean water to the region despite the major upgrade of key plant systems.
  • Ensured water quality and repeatability significantly exceeded expectations.
  • Replaced existing nozzle/plenum floor design with a modern prefabricated underdrain system.
  • Included detailed condition monitoring and inspection work to eliminate unnecessary works and to ensure the upgrade came within the council’s budget. 


Project Innovations

  • Upgraded the hydraulic design to allow independent level control in each filter.
  • Installed an automated caustic dilution facility to improve repeatability and safety.
  • Developed a control strategy to mitigate clarifier stratification issues.

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