Herring Island Future Planning Project

Project status

Informing the future use and management of Herring Island Environmental Sculpture Park

Update - August 2023

  • A survey conducted in July / early August asking you to tell us about your aspirations and requirements for a successful park experience is now closed. We are currently reviewing the feedback and will report back shortly through Engage Victoria.


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The project

The project is being undertaken on Wurundjeri Country.

We are undertaking a planning process to guide the future use and management of Herring Island Environmental Sculpture Park.

This process will shape the long-term vision of the park and considers the delivery of new experiences and improvements that will ensure the park’s longevity while meeting the needs of residents and visitors, and used to develop budget proposals for future investment considerations.

Parks Victoria is engaging with community and stakeholders on the aspirations and requirements for a successful park experience to help inform the draft plan that will be released for wider community feedback later in the year.


Herring Island is located in Burnley an inner eastern suburb of metropolitan MelbournePositioned within the Birrarung Yarra River four kilometres from the Melbourne CBD, the three hectare park is a unique offering providing a destination for river users and an oasis in an inner urban area.

The park offers picnic and informal play space, access to an existing hall for scheduled events, a modest network of trails that meander amongst the small native woodland and grassland vegetation, and to nine cultural and environmentally themed sculpturesThese installations, created by both internationally renowned and local artists, are interwoven into the park landscape and are a striking feature for visitors.

Herring Island is an artificial island that was formed in 1928 by cutting a new path for the Birrarung Yarra River through an old basalt quarryThe island was leased for many years by the scout movement, who named it after their patron, Sir Edmund Herring.  In 1994 Parks Victoria assumed management of the island, and with the help of community, turned it into a recreational parkToday access is by a Punt Service with a limited schedule that leaves from Como Landing.


Above - An aerial view of Herring Island showing its location context.

Project benefits


Depending on the outcome of the planning process, the plan seeks to explore new opportunities and experiences that support the visitor experience and management of the island.


Through the plan and continued conservation efforts, the island can continue to provide important habitat for native plants and wildlife and enhance the biodiversity.


A revitalised plan will provide opportunities for the diverse and growing Melbourne community and surrounding areas to recreate, learn, socialise and enjoy nature in a unique river and urban setting.  A community informed plan will ensure the future vision of the park reflects community aspirations.

Project funding

This planning project is part of the Activating the Lower Yarra River Project. 


Environment and cultural heritage management

Parks Victoria is working closely with Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung Cultural Heritage Aboriginal Corporation in the development of the planAs planning for this area progresses, we will continue to partner with the Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung Cultural Heritage Aboriginal Corporation to ensure that connections to Country are recognised and integrated into the creation of the future park. Detailed environmental and cultural heritage assessments are not required at this stage of the project, however an understanding of cultural values will inform the planning process.

Who are we working with?

Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung Cultural Heritage Aboriginal Corporation

Melbourne Water

City of Yarra

City of Stonnington 

Special interest groups


Stay updated

Parks Victoria will soon announce ways in which the community can participate in the future planning for Herring IslandTo be kept informed about the project, register to receive updates or contact the project team at engage@parks.vic.gov.au or call on 13 1963.

Related information

Learn more about Herring Island Environmental Sculpture Park



What is the project?

The project is about engaging with stakeholders and the community to understand how they use the park, what challenges they experience and ideas to help inform future planning of the parkThe aim of this planning process is to acknowledge the changing use, challenges and pressures currently impacting the site and plan for its future longevity as a unique experience that meets the needs of visitors for many years to comeIt considers how the park should be visited, improved, and protected, and provides short to medium term guidance for management decisions that support the park’s future direction.

Why is the planning process needed?

Herring Island has experienced an increase in the diversity of visitors seeking to access the site over recent years. The planning process being undertaken seeks to identify the barriers that need to be addressed and opportunities to improve the diversity of activities and use of the island. The Herring Island Management Plan (1991) is 31 years old and requires the development of a current plan to inform and expand on its intent.  This is not a full review of the Management Plan or detailed planning for on-ground works.

What is the scope of the project?

The project focusses on the land components of the three hectare island that falls within the park area boundary managed by Parks VictoriaWhile it does consider access, it does not consider the adjacent waterways or land beyond the island. 

How will stakeholders and community be involved?

During the early consultation stage, key stakeholders from relevant local government and other government agencies, community groups and commercial interests will provide input through a workshop around the current uses and challenges, future possibilities, and ideas for the park Community can provide input to inform the draft and final plan through online surveys. Details on when these surveys are open on Engage Victoria will be promoted locally to encourage feedbackTogether these inputs will help inform the final plan.  

When will the plan be implemented?

At the end of the planning process, we expect to have a current plan that sets out future directions for the whole of the park and will be used to inform management and support future investment opportunities. Community input is a key component of the initial project planning, and the findings will help inform the final planThere is no current commitment by Parks Victoria on the timing or extent of implementation of the final plan.

How can I contribute to the project and stay updated on the progress of this project?

You can subscribe to receive updates hereIf you have questions or want to learn more about a project, you can call the Parks Victoria team on 13 19 63 or email us at engage@parks.vic.gov.au.




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