Retarding basins

Retarding basins play an important function in managing stormwater in your local area. They are low lying areas of land set aside to temporarily store stormwater during very high rainfall.

​We manage over 200 retarding basins across Greater Melbourne with many recreational areas for the community.

How a retarding basin works

Melbourne water manages over 200 retarding basins as part of our world class drainage system.They are designed to reduce flooding by catching heavy rainfall and hold it in a reserved low lying area of land.

Retarding Basins - transcript

They can be a grassy area available for recreation while dry, or hold water permanently which supports biodiversity.

When a retarding basin fills, the landscape is designed to hold back stormwater to reduce flood risk to local homes and businesses. During this time, recreational areas may be affected. The stored water is then slowly released into the downstream drain or waterway.

Retarding basin before rain (no water)

retarding basin before (no water).jpg

 Retarding basin after rain

retarding basin after.jpg

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To enquire about a retarding basin upgrade near you:


Last updated:
19 February 2021