Celebrating 100 years of Luggage Point

Urban Utilities

Thursday, 30 November, 2023

Celebrating 100 years of Luggage Point

Urban Utilities is celebrating the centenary of the Luggage Point Sewage Treatment Plant, an important milestone. The facility was officially opened on 23 November 1923, marking the beginning of sewage treatment in Brisbane.

“Despite Brisbane being the last capital city in Australia to be sewered, the plant’s opening saw the city at the forefront of innovation, as it was the first in Australia to use activated sludge technology,” said Urban Utilities CEO Paul Arnold.

According to Arnold, the technology was ahead of its time and still remains best practice in wastewater management.

“Unfortunately, the plant didn’t operate for very long, as it was unaffordable during the period of the Great Depression.”

Despite this unusual beginning, the facility was significantly expanded in 1981 with further upgrades in 1993 and 2002.

“The wastewater plant is Queensland’s largest, treating the wastewater of around 750,000 people, to the highest standard every day,” Arnold said.

The plant has been renamed Luggage Point Resource Recovery Centre as it now turns wastewater into renewable energy, biosolids and recycled water. Luggage Point is also home to Urban Utilities’ Innovation Centre, launched in 2013.

According to Arnold, the centre has since developed into a multifaceted precinct.

“The Innovation Centre is home to state-of-the-art facilities that attract research partners from around the world,” he said.

“From using algae to anammox to treat wastewater naturally, to helping develop Australia’s first ‘flushability’ standard, this industry-leading research has taken place at Luggage Point, where sewage treatment first began in Brisbane a century ago.”

Over the coming decades, the centre will continue evolving as it plans to cater to population growth and climate change.

“We’re also focused on making sure our services remain affordable for our customers across Brisbane, Ipswich, Somerset, Scenic Rim and Lockyer Valley,” Arnold said.

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