The brief

When Sunshine Coast Council embarked on an ambitious redevelopment programme that would see the transformation of Maroochydore City Centre, deliver some of the nation’s most sustainable building design and create over 30,000 jobs by 2040, it knew that it needed to take a more innovative approach to waste collection.

Not only would the development be densely populated it would also have restricted vehicle access meaning that the number of traditional waste bins required would have been uneconomical, unviable and not aesthetically pleasing.

Envac was invited to tender for the project that would see the first ever automated waste collection system (AWCS), also known as pneumatic waste collection, be installed on Australian soil.

The Project

After winning the contract in September 2016, and as part of Maroochydore’s smart city planning phase, Envac’s design team began developing a system that would be responsible for collecting waste, via its underground pipe network, over a footprint spanning 182,000m2.

Envac is one of a number of select technologies to showcase Australia’s commitment to sustainable development and innovation that includes smart lighting, real time traffic management systems and high-speed fibre connections.

9 tons/day

designed collection capacity when completed and in full operation

2 separate waste fractions

Rest / Recyclables

300 waste inlets

conveniently located through out the city district

The results

This is an on-going project, the Envac system is not in operation yet. Once it is up and running, these are the expected results:

City workers and residents will never have to walk past rows of wheelie bins or be woken early by noisy garbage trucks in the Maroochydore City Centre.

Common aspects of waste collection such as odours and vermin will be avoided, and the costs of daily street cleaning will be reduced.

The Envac system will help improve the area’s infrastructure as waste is collected and transported in an underground pipe network, not on the streets. This will reduce waste collection traffic with heavy vehicles remarkably, and make the living environment quieter, cleaner and safer.

The first phase of the system, which includes the collection station, is due to be completed in 2019. The entire development will be completed in 2041.

I’m very proud the Sunshine Coast is leading the change in Australia with this innovative waste collection solution and I’m sure other cities and major urban projects will soon be following in our footsteps. As well as making our city heart more attractive, this technology has a track record of increasing recycling rates, so our natural environment will benefit too.

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