Project Round
Project Number
516 - 002
Research Organisation
Victoria University

Sustainable Water Options for Sports Fields

The Challenge

The Sportsfield Irrigation Software is targeted at helping review Melbourne’s future developments and existing irrigation practices for sports fields.

The Project

This project delivered on three objectives:

  1. Investigation of the socioeconomic effects of water restrictions on the use of sports fields,
  2. Provision of an information package for decision makers on the development and management of sports fields,
  3. Development of a software model, to quantify irrigation water and nutrient demand and their dependence on the use of alternative water sources.

The Outcome

The socioeconomic impact study found:

  • Water Restrictions led to a reduction in usable sports fields and created new demands on local government, sporting clubs and volunteer groups,
  • The resulting redistribution of sporting field allocations excluded less advantaged segments of the community,
  • Restrictions compromised community capacity to contribute toward governmental health, well-being and participation objectives,
  • Sports fields are viewed as core community assets. A survey showed a significant section of the community is willing to pay to ensure availability.

The information package addresses the following factors:

  • Turf types and irrigation volume,
  • Turf and soil health,
  • Human health and community acceptance of alternative water sources,
  • Six alternative water sources and their impacts on irrigation.

The Sportsfield Irrigation Software model was developed in Visual Basic and runs on Microsoft Excel 2007 or later versions. It calculates:

  • Volume of irrigation water required,
  • Volume of water supplied from multiple water sources,
  • Turf nutrient requirements and savings in fertilizer requirements,
  • Water quality supplied from various water sources after treatment,
  • Water treatment capital and operating costs and greenhouse gas emissions,
  • Catchment sizes and storage volumes for a specified volumetric reliability.

Supporting documents