Apparently, last weekend's flood was something you'd see "once in 500 years". While absolutely nothing compared to recent flooding elsewhere in this country, it was a big one for this little suburban creek.
On Tuesday, just on a whim, I rode to work on the Gardiners Creek Trail rather than my usual on-road route. And I must say, there was some impressive destruction. Kudos to Boroondara and Stonnington councils, workers from both sides of the creek were out in force clearing up, repairing damaged paths and top-dressing the playing fields.
Anyway, here's a sample of what I saw.
High water line
Judging by the debris left on railings in this area, the water level under Glenferrie Road would have been well above head height.
Sand, silt, mud and debris were deposited all along the creek.
Water, water, everywhere
I don't have a photo of the grounds at St Kevin's College but it too was turned into a lake (and later a stinky swamp) by the surge of water. Interestingly, the grounds of both St Kev's and Scotch College are protected by levees. Scotch's slightly high levee appears to have held, St Kev's lower one clearly did not.
But, of course, I've left the best until last:
(Much more impressive photos on Melbourne Cyclist.)
Yes, this is the same Solway Street Bridge that was closed for about 18 months awaiting replacement before the two local councils decided that a patch-up job would be adequate. (At this point, I'd like to highlight what I said in May 2007. Aren't I the smug one?)
According to a small note in a presentation made last year:
Solway Street Bridge
A new bridge will be constructed in 2011/12 FY to improve the width and alignment of the existing bridge. This is part of the larger project to build the missing link in the Gardiners Creek Trail between Solway Street and Warrigal Road.
I think we can safely assume that this work will be brought forward to the 2010/11 FY—surely local residents couldn't be kept waiting another 18 months to have access returned here? I certainly support Zed's recommendation to contact the council (I'd say both councils and Melbourne Water) requesting the immediate replacement of this bridge.
Incidentally, I wonder if pitt & sherry will be invited to tender on the new bridge?
In any case the new bridge had better be pretty flood tolerant, it looks like Melbourne suburbs are likely to flood more often…