COUNCILLOR John Fry is urging Bathurst Regional Council to reconsider its plans to run a pipeline through the city's streets for its planned stormwater harvesting scheme.
Instead, Cr Fry said he and Greening Bathurst believe harvesting rural stormwater peaks directly from the Macquarie River would be more efficient and would gather better quality water.
A stormwater harvesting scheme is one of two water security projects - along with a pipeline from Winburndale Dam to the Bathurst Water Filtration Plant - which are a priority for council.
The NSW Government has provided $10 million in funding for the two projects aimed at drought-proofing the region during future dry spells.
Cr Fry said he and Greening Bathurst supported the idea of a holding pond at Proctor Park in the city's south for the stormwater scheme.
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But he said the construction of the planned pipeline along Russell, Havannah, Durham, Charlotte, William, Stanley and Morrisset streets, to deliver the stormwater to the Waste Water Treatment Plant, would be a "nightmare" for the city.
"it's an incredible engineering work," Cr Fry said.
"It's a scale we've never been seen before [in Bathurst].
"You know how much controversy [you get] when you dig up an intersection for a roundabout? Multiply that by how many intersections."
And there is the question of what lies beneath, he said.
"We think that once the machinery gets going up the streets, it will run into pipes and services that we never knew existed," Cr Fry said.
Cr Fry said he and Greening Bathurst were not advocating scrapping the plan for a holding pond at Proctor Park.
"We're happy for that to go ahead. That would give us 20 days' water or 200 megalitres," he said.
"We're happy to have an emergency pond for back-up."
But he said taking water from the Macquarie River during times of rural stormwater peaks, at a megalitre an hour using bigger pumps at the Bathurst Water Filtration Plant, would make more sense.
"At the moment, we drag it [water from the river] out at the water works with big pumps," he said.
"What we're talking about is bigger pumps to drag it out quicker - that means a megalitre an hour, which is a lot of water."
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