Australia’s first underground automated waste collection system in a CBD officially opened on 8 June 2021 in the Maroochydore City Centre on the Sunshine Coast.
Waste and recyclables from buildings and public bins in the new Maroochydore City Centre will be moved by vacuum pressure at up to 70kmh through a 6.5km network of underground pipes to a control centre on the perimeter of the CBD. The collected material will then be transferred to disposal or recycling facilities.
Sunshine Coast Council Mayor, Mark Jamieson, said the future of waste collection had arrived on the Sunshine Coast.
“This is Australia’s first, high-tech, underground automated waste collection system for a CBD,” Mayor Jamieson said.
“New urban developments in Stockholm, Seoul, Barcelona, London, Singapore and Beijing have all utilised the Swedish-designed ENVAC waste collection system – but no Australian city has done so – until now.
“This project is just one of the ways in which the new Maroochydore City Centre will be one of the smartest cities in the country and another step towards achieving our vision for the Sunshine Coast to be Australia’s most sustainable region.”
Service Delivery Portfolio Councillor, Winston Johnston, said the nation-leading project offered many advantages over the traditional kerb-side bin collection for CBD residents, businesses, council and the environment.
“This system can be monitored continuously and waste disposal managed on both a routine and as-needs basis,” Mr Johnston said.
“This means cleaner streets, fewer odours and no overflowing wheelie bins in this city centre.
“It means city workers and residents won’t have to walk past rows of wheelie bins on the street or be woken early by noisy garbage trucks servicing bins on the city streets.
“Over the long term, the council aims to achieve other benefits these systems have shown internationally, like more waste diverted from landfill, reduced carbon emissions from collection trucks, and of course less truck traffic on the local roads.”
The existing AWCS underground pipe network will be progressively extended into future stages as the city centre is developed.