Transport Canberra and City Services


Sump Conversions

This page outlines the procedure for the conversion of standard stormwater sump cover to trafficable cover.

1. Introduction

Along suburban roads there are three restraints on where a driveway to the property may be sited along the leased block frontage. They are;

  • a minimum 8 metre clearance from kerb tangent point
  • minimum 1.5 metre clearance to ACTEW sub stations and transformers
  • a minimum 1.2 metre clearance to services (ie stormwater sumps).

If a lessee wishes to site a driveway in a location, which is contrary to these minimums, they must seek approval from the relevant authority and pay all costs associated with any works required to comply with the set minimums.

2. Purpose

On a road bounded by a lay-back kerb it may be possible to convert the roadside stormwater sump cover to allow light motor vehicle access to a single residential dwelling. The conversion is not suitable where heavier vehicles enter the driveway. The conversion cannot be installed at a sump where multiple users (ie. unit developments) use the driveway; neither can it be installed in a commercial or industrial driveway. In these instances, along with the instance where the kerb is not a lay-back kerb, the sump will require relocation.

This procedure sets out the method of obtaining approval to convert a sump cover and the arrangements necessary in arranging the conversion.

3. Scope

This procedure covers the types of initial land development in the ACT where a sump conversion may be requested:

  • in older development areas where the land development was carried out by government agencies
  • in newly developed areas where private consulting companies have carried out the land development
  • where blocks are redeveloped in such a way as to require a change in location of the vehicle access driveway.

4. Responsibility and authority

4.1 Approval to convert a sump cover, or relocate a sump which is situated at the location of the proposed driveway can only be given by the Manager (or representative), Asset Acceptance, Territory and Municipal Services.

4.2 Approval can only be given after investigation establishes that the conversion will have no adverse effect on the public at large, neighbouring leases, traffic or government assets.

5. Procedure

5.1 The Lessee requiring a sump conversion must submit their request in writing to:

The Manager
Asset Acceptance
Transport Canberra and City Services
GPO Box 158
Canberra ACT 2601

5.2 The request will need to specify the suburb/section number/block number and street address of the lease at which the sump cover conversion is required, and if there is more than one sump or one frontage to the block, specify which sump is to be converted.

5.3 The Asset Acceptance unit will acknowledge the receipt of the request in writing. The acknowledgment does not indicate approval, however will advise the lessees of the following;

  • that all costs associated with the conversion will be borne by the lessee,
  • that the lessee will be advised in writing of the cost of the conversion at the same time that approval is given.
  • that when approval is given, the lessee takes the letter of approval to the nominated Asset Acceptance Unit service provider, who are the only approved persons to carry out the work.
  • in the case of new homes, work can only be carried out after the lessee is in residence. This is to avoid damage being caused to the cover by heavy furniture removal vehicles and site clearing equipment.

5.4 Asset Acceptance will inspect the site to ascertain the following:

  • is the sump at a low point?
  • is the sump at the end of a cul-de-sac?
  • the conversion reduces inlet capacity, will it increase local flooding or increase risk to road safety?
  • do adjacent sumps have the capacity to cope with increased flow?
  • if a blockage occurs at the converted sump, is there an acceptable overland flow path for excess water flow without causing nuisance flooding?
  • has the area already been investigated for stormwater deficiencies? (Check the Consultant reports)

5.5 The Asset Acceptance unit will carry out any necessary calculations to establish if there is a need for extra in flow as a consequence of the sump conversions after carrying out the inspection determined in step 5.4.

5.6 If the leased block is in a newly developed area, the Asset Acceptance unit will forward the request to the land developer for the sub-division concerned. They will undertake the inspection and calculations (as in steps 5.4 and 5.5) and advise the Asset Acceptance unit of their findings.

5.7 If the leased block is being redeveloped in such a way as to require a change in location of the vehicle access point, and this relocation conflicts with the road side sump, it is the responsibility of the lessee’s designer to provide an inspection report and all calculations required in steps 5.4 and 5.5.

5.8 The Asset Acceptance unit will write to the lessee who requested the sump conversion advising them that approval has been or hasn’t been given, the cost of the conversion or relocation of the sump and advising them to take the letter of approval to the Roads ACT nominated service provider.

5.9 The Asset Acceptance unit will fax a certified copy of the letter to the nominated service provider advising that approval has been given, and to expect the lessee to make contact to have works carried out at the lessees expense.

6. Records

6.1 The request for the conversion, inspection report, design calculations and the letter of approval will be placed on the relevant suburb stormwater information file for future reference, and a copy of the approval to be attached to the Driveway information file.

7. Related procedures and references

7.1 Refer to the driveways section.

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We acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the ACT, the Ngunnawal people. We acknowledge and respect their continuing culture and the contribution they make to the life of this city and this region.

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