Downer EDI bags A$600m water services contract with Unitywater in Queensland


Downer EDI Limited (Downer) has been awarded a substantial A$600 million contract by Unitywater for the delivery of water, sewerage, and recycled water services in Queensland, Australia. This significant contract, commencing in May 2024, extends over an initial five-year period with potential extensions, signaling a major commitment to the region’s water management systems.

Contract Details and Service Areas

Under the terms of the contract, Downer is set to undertake capital works across the water, sewerage, and recycled water networks within the Sunshine Coast and Moreton Bay regions. Additionally, the agreement covers extensive work across Unitywater’s 17 sewerage treatment plants spanning the Sunshine Coast, Noosa, and Moreton Bay regions. The comprehensive scope of this contract includes program management services, stakeholder management, business case development, and the construction and commissioning of water and wastewater assets.

Strategic Implications and Industry Leadership

Peter Tompkins, Chief Executive Officer of the Downer Group, highlighted the strategic importance of this contract, stating, “With the award of this contract, Downer now supports water and wastewater services to more than 13 million Australians—more than half the Australian population.” This contract not only reinforces Downer’s position as a leading provider in the sector but also enhances its long-standing partnership with Unitywater.

“This is an important contract award for Downer in a growth sector where Downer has industry-leading expertise,” Mr. Tompkins added. “We have previously partnered with Unitywater on a range of projects, however, this new long-term collaborative style contract will significantly expand our relationship.”

Commitment to Sustainability and Community Impact

The project is strategically aligned with environmental goals, contributing to Unitywater’s net zero emissions targets. Downer’s approach will foster sustainable employment outcomes and create opportunities for local service providers and suppliers, thereby stimulating the regional economy.

“We look forward to working closely with Unitywater to deliver these vital services to this rapidly growing region in south-east Queensland, and contributing to Unitywater’s net zero emissions targets as well as creating sustainable employment outcomes and opportunities for local service providers and suppliers,” Tompkins expressed.

Future Outlook and Regional Development

The initiation of this contract is expected to significantly boost Downer’s influence in the water and wastewater sector and underscore its commitment to supporting critical infrastructure projects across Australia and New Zealand. As southeast Queensland continues to grow, the enhancement of its water and wastewater infrastructure is critical for sustainable development and environmental stewardship.

The project also promises to strengthen Downer’s market position, driving long-term shareholder value through strategic expansion and expertise in managing complex infrastructure needs.

This partnership between Downer and Unitywater is poised to significantly impact the water management landscape in Queensland, demonstrating a robust model of public-private collaboration aimed at enhancing regional infrastructure and achieving sustainability goals.

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