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Public input wanted on new Melbourne utility

Two Melbourne water companies have merged to form Greater Western Water. The new utility is seeking community consultation about its brand.

Melbourne's Greater Western Water will launch on 1 July after City West Water and Western Water merged to manage delivery of water services across Melbourne’s outer-western region.

In the transition to the new entity, Greater Western Water is inviting public feedback about its new brand to understand how it can best reflect customers, and their needs and interests, into the future.

Western Water and City West Water have approximately 580,000 customers combined, which is forecast to rise to over 690,000 by 2028. Over the next 30 years, the population of Melbourne’s west is expected to double.

Without integration, the government said that bills for Western Water customers would have continued to rise. By 2029, current Western Water annual bills will be on average $164 cheaper than they are now, and nearly $500 cheaper than they would have been without integration. City West Water customers will also see their annual bills fall by up to $110.

Minister for Water Lisa Neville said that creation of Greater Western Water was informed by a strategic review after working closely with the Victorian Government.

“The Joint Transition Committee will be responsible for engaging and consulting with key stakeholders and the broader community — as we work towards providing better water infrastructure, prices and jobs for the Western region,” she said.

There will be no job losses as non-executive staff transfer to the newly integrated water entity in the coming months. The Sunbury and Footscray offices and all depots will be retained, with a further $500,000 to be invested in planning upgrades to convert the Sunbury office into a COVID-safe Greater Western Water hub.

Communities currently served by Western Water will have greater access to the Melbourne water system, such as its desalination plant.