Cumbalum Urban Release Area

Groundwater assessment | Ecological review | Modelling


The Cumbalum Urban Release Area (CURA) is a strategic rezoning to help provide for future housing needs within the Ballina Shire. Following preliminary site investigations by  a number of consultants, AWC were commissioned to investigate post-development groundwater scenarios with regard to potential impacts on endangered ecological communities, threatened fauna habitat and the adjacent Ballina Nature Reserve in order to determine the efficiency of stormwater and WSUD proposals and review proposed mitgation measures.


  • To install dataloggers at three locations to profile groundwater hydrology
  • Assess vulnerability of local vegetation communities to altered groundwater conditions
  • Determine adequacy of proposed stormwater retention measures
  • Model evapotranspiration requirements for surface water within planted detention wetlands

Partners & Stakeholders

  • Planning Resolutions
  • Ballina Shire Council
  • Office of Environment & Heritage (OEH)


  • Development of Water Balance Model based on surface water flow, ground water recharge and evapotranspiration

Project Facts

Project Value: $55, 000

Challenges: Liaison with Council, government agencies and other consultants; extensive data review and modelling; existing environmental constraints