Sewage Pumping Station No 22 (SP0022) | NSW Environment, Energy and Science

Culture and heritage


Sewage Pumping Station No 22 (SP0022)

Item details

Name of item: Sewage Pumping Station No 22 (SP0022)
Other name/s: SPS 22
Type of item: Built
Group/Collection: Utilities - Sewerage
Category: Sewage Pump House/Pumping Station
Primary address: Gipps Street (within St Lukes Park), Concord, NSW 2137
Local govt. area: Canada Bay
Property description
Lot/Volume CodeLot/Volume NumberSection NumberPlan/Folio CodePlan/Folio Number
LOT3 DP562557


UBD Edition 36 - Map 233, N-9. Curtilage to include the fabric within and to the boundary of the SWC property on which SPS0022 is located including the superstructure, substructure, ancillary installations (pipework, valves, ventstacks, wet wells, inlet well, etc) but not including fencing or external electrical components.
All addresses
Street AddressSuburb/townLGAParishCountyType
Gipps Street (within St Lukes Park)ConcordCanada Bay  Primary Address


Organisation NameOwner CategoryDate Ownership Updated
Sydney WaterState Government 

Statement of significance:

SP0022, Concord is of historic, aesthetic and technical/research significance. Its historic significance is derived from its association with the Main Western Outfall (later incorporated into the SWSOOS No 1) being one of the first stations constructed to serve this major sewer at the turn of the century. The station along with the later construction of the SWSOOS formed a part of the major advance in the protection of the public health of the western suburbs of Sydney and Concord specifically. Aesthetically, it is an example of a small scale industrial building designed in the Federation Queen Anne style and architecturally is one of finest examples of the early sewage pumping stations. It is technically significant for fulfilling its function as a low level sewage pumping continuously for nearly a century as originally designed and constructed albeit with minor mechanical upgrading. It has educational potential to reveal information about sewage pumping engineering and in architectural taste in a period when utilitarian buildings were given as much careful attention as public buildings. It originally pumped to the Botany Sewage Farm.
Date significance updated: 09 Dec 00
Note: The State Heritage Inventory provides information about heritage items listed by local and State government agencies. The State Heritage Inventory is continually being updated by local and State agencies as new information becomes available. Read the OEH copyright and disclaimer.


Designer/Maker: New South Wales Public Works Department
Builder/Maker: New South Wales Public Works Department
Construction years: 1907-1908
Physical description: SP0022, Concord is a low level sewage pumping station located in St Lukes Park. The station consists of two distinct parts: a superstructure comprising a small single storey loadbearing brick building; and a substructure constructed of concrete which houses machinery and sewage chambers. Architecturally the building was designed in a utilitarian version of the Federation Queen Anne style. Externally there is a corrugated iron gambrel roof with timber louvred gable vents, exposed eaves and timber sarking boards. Openings consist of double casement timber windows with multi paned coloured glass fanlights; semi circular fixed sash timber windows with brick arch heads to the front elevation; and a timber framed, ledged and sheeted double door with a multi paned coloured glass fanlight. Brickwork is red-brown coloured, tuck pointed and laid in English bond with splayed brick piers capped with rubbed sandstone. There are rock faced sandstone sills and lintels. Internally there are three exposed Queen post trusses with a varnished tongue and groove boarded ceiling. Walls are rendered and lined out to simulate ashlar coursing with a ceramic tile dado. The machinery well has two vertical spindle centrifugal pumps direct coupled to electric motors. Adjacent are two sewage chambers and an inlet well. The station is located adjacent to a stormwater channel and scout hall in St Lukes Park and is surrounded by a cyclone wire mesh fence. There is an electrical substation located at the rear of the station. The station is set well back from
Physical condition and/or
Archaeological potential:
Fabric is in good condition. Archaeological potential is high.
Date condition updated:26 Apr 00
Modifications and dates: Minor reversible alterations.
Current use: Low level sewage pumping station


Historical notes: In 1859 Sydney's sewerage system consisted of five outfall sewers which drained to Sydney Harbour. By the 1870's, the Harbour had become grossly polluted and, as a result, the government created the Sydney City and Suburban Health Board to investigate an alternative means of disposing of the City's sewage. This lead to the construction of two gravitation sewers in 1889 by the Public Works Department: a northern sewer being the Bondi Ocean Outfall Sewer and a southern sewer draining to a sewage farm at Botany Bay. Low lying areas around the Harbour which could not gravitate to the new outfall sewers continued to drain to the old City Council sewers. Low level pumping stations were therefore needed to collect the sewage from such areas and pump it by means of additional sewers known as rising mains, to the main gravitation system. The first comprehensive low level sewerage system began at the beginning of the 20th century when the Public Works Department built a group of 20 low level pumping stations around the foreshores of the inner harbour and in the subsequent development of other outfall sewers to serve the southern, western and northern suburbs, greater Sydney now has over 600 low level sewage pumping stations. The Southern and Western Suburbs Ocean Outfall Sewer, which SP0022 pumps to, consisted of two main sewer lines: the Southern Outfall Sewer, which was the first built in 1886, ran northwards through the suburbs of Waterloo and Redfern, and reached the sewage farm by means of an inverted syphon passing under the Cooks River. The Western Outfall Sewer came into operation in 1989 and ran westwards from the sewage farm, before curling north to cross Wolli Creek and Cooks River to divide into three main branches which serve suburbs such as Strathfield, Burwood, Ashfield, Drummoyne, Leichhardt, Newtown etc. The SWSOOS is now Sydney's largest sewage system, and because of its size, it is now designated in two main parts: No 1 SWSOOS which serves Sydney's more southern suburbs; and No 2 SWSOOS which serves Sydney's more south-western and western suburbs.

Historic themes

Australian theme (abbrev)New South Wales themeLocal theme
3. Economy-Developing local, regional and national economies Health-Activities associated with preparing and providing medical assistance and/or promoting or maintaining the well being of humans (none)-
3. Economy-Developing local, regional and national economies Technology-Activities and processes associated with the knowledge or use of mechanical arts and applied sciences (none)-
4. Settlement-Building settlements, towns and cities Utilities-Activities associated with the provision of services, especially on a communal basis (none)-

Assessment of significance

SHR Criteria a)
[Historical significance]
SP0022, Concord was built in 1908 and was one of the earliest stations constructed to serve the Southern and Western Suburbs Ocean Outfall Sewer (SWSOOS). The station, along with the construction of the SWSOOS, formed a part of the major advance in the protection of the public health of western Sydney, evidences the growth of Concord and expansion of municipal services during the early part of the 20th century. Architecturally, the station would one of the finest in the SWC system and likely NSW.
SHR Criteria c)
[Aesthetic significance]
SP0022 is an excellent example of a robust and well proportioned small scale industrial Federation Queen Anne style building. It displays in its fabric a combination of superior utilitarian design, architectural qualities and craftsmanship. SP0022 is prominently located in St Lukes Park and has considerable streetscape significance.
SHR Criteria d)
[Social significance]
With community awareness of the cultural significance of this SP0022, the heritage community at least is likely to hold this station in high regard. It is also likley to be held in some regard by the local community for the function it performs.
SHR Criteria e)
[Research potential]
SP0022 has the potential to reveal information about the construction techniques and design of the station. The pumping station still fulfills its role nearly a century after its introduction as a low level sewage pumping station as orignally designed and constructed albeit with some mechanical upgrading. It was one of the first electric stations built using AC power as against DC current in the inner city.
SHR Criteria f)
There are no other better architectural examples within the SWC system and likely NSW.
SHR Criteria g)
The station is a very good representative example of a small scale Federation Queen Anne style public utility building. SP0022 is a representative example of a low level sewage pumping station on the Southern and Western Suburbs Ocean Outfall Sewer.
Assessment criteria: Items are assessed against the PDF State Heritage Register (SHR) Criteria to determine the level of significance. Refer to the Listings below for the level of statutory protection.

Recommended management:

Where no Conservation Management Plan, Heritage Assessment or Statement of Heritage Impact is in place, or where works are outside the scope existing heritage documentation, assess heritage impacts of proposed works in accordance with Sydney Water Environment Impact Assessment procedures. Undertake a Heritage Assessment and/or Statement of Heritage Impact as required. Liaise with the Sydney Water Heritage Manager when major changes are planned for the item. Undertake archival and photographic recording before major changes, in accordance with Heritage Council guidelines. Lodge copies of the archival record with the Sydney Water Archives and the NSW Heritage Office.


Heritage ListingListing TitleListing NumberGazette DateGazette NumberGazette Page
Heritage Act - s.170 NSW State agency heritage register  01 Jan 00   

Study details

TitleYearNumberAuthorInspected byGuidelines used
Sydney Water Heritage Study1996 Graham Brooks and Associates Pty Ltd  Yes
Heritage Study of the Upper Nepean Scheme1992 Edward Higginbotham & Associates Pty Ltd  No

References, internet links & images


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Data source

The information for this entry comes from the following source:
Name: State Government
Database number: 4571726

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