Uplifting accessibility and experiences across our urban parks
Friday 14 April, 2023
From improving park facilities like barbecues, toilets, pathways and picnic tables, to revitalising our piers and jetties or building new parks from scratch, Parks Victoria is delivering upgrades across our urban green spaces to provide more opportunities for communities to unlock the benefits of time spent in nature.
We have over $165 million worth of projects underway across Melbourne, with many already reaching significant milestones in the first few months of 2023. This means that more parks are getting better facilities, so that you can enjoy your time in nature even more.
Read on for a recap of some of the great works happening across our urban parks so far in 2023.
Olinda Precinct Project - Netball and cricket facility upgrades: Works started
Community sporting clubs in the Dandenong Ranges will soon be able to enjoy better facilities and more opportunities to participate in sport, with construction now underway to deliver new and improved netball courts and cricket practice nets at the Olinda Recreation Reserve.
The works will refurbish the existing netball court, and build a new netball court, supporting infrastructure including lights and shelter, and four new cricket practice nets.
The new facilities are part of the Olinda Precinct Project Stage 1, which has been made possible thanks to a $7.6 million investment from the Victoria Government. Subject to on-ground and construction industry conditions, works are expected to be completed by late 2023.
Pictured above: The existing netball court at Olinda Recreation Reserve, which will be refurbished as part of Stage 1 of the Olinda Precinct Project.
Urban Parks Active Wellbeing Program: Works started
Melburnians will soon enjoy improved accessibility and a better visitor experience at their favourite parks, with construction to deliver upgrades at 21 parks across Melbourne construction now underway as part of the $21 million Urban Parks Active Wellbeing Program.
The program will improve parks spanning from Point Cook to the Mornington Peninsula, including new and refurbished picnic shelters and tables, playground equipment, barbecues, signage and toilets, wider and more accessible pathways, and car park and trail repairs. A missing link in the Bay Trail will also be constructed, and the Point Gellibrand seawall will be restored.
Works are being rolled out in stages, and subject to on-ground and construction industry conditions, are expected to be completed in late 2023. Find out more about the project at the Urban Parks Active Wellbeing Program page.
Pictured above: Friends and family enjoy a picnic at Jells Park. The Urban Parks Active Wellbeing Program will deliver upgraded picnic facilities across our urban parks, to make these experiences even better.
Revitalising our piers and jetties
Victorians are passionate about getting out and exploring our precious marine environments, and our piers and jetties are a favourite place for coastal connection. This year, major works are underway to rebuild and upgrade a number of piers, including the iconic St Kilda Pier, historic Altona Pier and ecologically significant Rye Pier.
The entire Rye Pier is being rebuilt and upgraded with an investment of over $6 million, with a final stage of construction now underway. The works will completely rebuild the pier, adding safety handrails, solar lights and a wider timber deck to cater for growing visitation.
In the final stage of the reconstruction, we’re continuing the approach of retaining viable piles which are no longer a structural support for the pier. Instead of being removed during the project, the piles will be cut beneath the low tide mark and left in place, serving as important habitat for marine plants and animals, including colourful seaweeds, sponges, tube worms and molluscs. Stage 2 of the project is now underway with works expected to be complete in early 2024, subject to on-ground and construction industry conditions.
Pictured above: St Kilda Pier under construction.
Corben Oval pavilion: Stage 1 works complete
Corben Oval Pavilion has a new lease on life with upgrades now complete on its roof and stormwater drainage. Set on Wurundjeri Country at Yarra Bend Park in Fairfield, the Stage 1 works also delivered a new drinking fountain for sports players and other park users.
These works are part of the Victorian Government investment of $1.6 million to upgrade the Corben Oval Pavilion and resolve complex power issues at Yarra Bend Park. With Stage 1 works now complete, we move to Stage 2 works to rectify a significant power supply line fault that has disrupted power in the reserve since 2019. We’ll get to work on restoring high-voltage power to the precinct, including the Corben pavilion, toilet block, lighting and barbecues at the Loop Picnic Area. We’re working with the Wurundjeri Woi-wurrung Cultural Heritage Aboriginal Corporation and Heritage Victoria to ensure these works are sensitively scoped and the cultural heritage of the site is preserved.
Pictured above: Corben oval prior to works starting.
To find out more about projects being delivered across our parks, head to parks.vic.gov.au/projects.