Our Living River

In 2014, City of Parramatta in partnership with 11 other councils and agencies including Sydney Water, NSW Environment Protection Authority and NSW Planning & Environment, created the Parramatta River Catchment Group.  

Our shared vision was to create a living river. One that the millions of people who live and work within 20 minutes of the Parramatta River would be able to swim in again. 

Our goal is to make Parramatta River swimmable by 2025. Four sites are already open. The most recent, Lake Parramatta, opened in 2015 as part of our initiative. 

Twelve new sites have been scoped, with investigations on water quality, swim safety, ecological health and community interest in progress.

The next step to making our vision a reality is a ten-step Parramatta River Masterplan. 

The Masterplan has been designed on scientific studies and community consultation and outlines how we will achieve key targets for:

  • Clean, clear water that is safe and supports life in the river including healthy ecosystems in the river and natural creeks
  • Quality facilities for events, relaxation, recreation and family fun
  • Greater access through public transport, walkways and cycle ways  
  • Healthy ecosystems in the river, the catchment and surrounding creeks
  • Supporting our local economy by creating opportunities for local business development.

The City of Parramatta is now actively seeking broad community input into the Masterplan. We’d love your ideas on how we can work together to make the Parramatta River a living river for everyone to enjoy. It’s not going to be easy, so we need many collaborators.  

Review the ten-step Masterplan overview and then go to our survey to give us your views and let us know if we’re on the right track.

What is a living river?

A living river is more than just a place to jump in and cool off on a warm day. It’s about creating a clean, clear waterway that supports life, including birds, animals, marine and plant life and restoring healthy ecosystems. It’s also about managing the use of our river through effective planning controls, improving stormwater infrastructure and providing better public access.  

We’ve worked with our partners and the community to identify what we need to change and what we need to do to create a healthier, swimmable river and these ideas have become the foundations of our ten-step Parramatta River Masterplan. 

The Parramatta River Masterplan sets out the steps to a swimmable river by 2025. These include rigorous water health monitoring, changes to environment and planning controls such as stormwater collection, measures to create a healthy ecosystem and more opportunities for the community to interact with and care for their waterways. 

The Parramatta River belongs to all of us, and we want a plan that reflects that. 

view the Masterplan

See the Our Living River website for dates and locations the Masterplan will be on display and information on how to contribute.

More Information

You can also find out more through social media and email: