Urban Parks Active Wellbeing Program
Parks and reserves play important roles in boosting the health and wellbeing of local communities across Victoria. These important green spaces connect people to nature and provide opportunities for recreation, relaxation and socialising with friends and family.
In Melbourne, Parks Victoria is delivering improvements to urban parks to ensure they continue to support healthy communities.
Through the Victorian Government’s $21 million Urban Parks Active Wellbeing Program, 21 parks will have visitor facilities upgraded and replaced.
The upgrades completed as part of this project will uplift the visitor experience at 21 parks across Melbourne and will provide more opportunities for active recreation in parks for people of all abilities.
Access to open green spaces is one of the many things that makes Melbourne a great place to live, work and play.
This project will improve people’s enjoyment of their local park, encourage socialising, recreation and spending time in nature – which we know is good for health and wellbeing.
Improved design of facilities and pathways will improve accessibility for people with limited mobility.
These works are being delivered through the Victorian Government’s $21 million Urban Parks Active Wellbeing Program.
Between 2021–2023, visitor facilities such as picnic shelters and tables, toilets, carparks, BBQs, playground equipment, signage, pathways and trails will be upgraded or replaced.
Subject to on-ground conditions, and any public health directions that may be in place, this project will be delivered between 2021–2023.
Below are estimated milestones within this timeline:
- September 2021: Contracts awarded for program design (complete)
- October 2021: Early works start at Braeside and Cardinia Reservoir Parks (underway)
- Summer 2021/22: New picnic tables to arrive at 18 parks
- Autumn 2022: Tender process for works at remaining parks
- Winter 2022: Construction to start on remaining parks
- Winter 2023: Project complete
Latest updates as at November 2021:
- Works commenced at Braeside and Cardinia Reservoir Parks in October
- Consultants GHD engaged to completed the designs for upgrades at 18 parks
In addition to the park upgrades, the Urban Active Wellbeing Program includes two larger projects.
Bay Trail extension to Point Cook Coastal Park
The project includes funding to build a trail link between Sanctuary lakes and Point Cook Coastal Park.
The trail link will allow a flat off-road journey for cyclist, walkers or runners to access Point Cook Coastal Park to enjoy the park facilities, have a picnic and take in views of the city, Cheetham Wetlands and Port Phillip.
Timeline for Bay Trail Project:
- September 2021: Consultants GHD engaged
- Spring 2021: Geotechnical investigation and environmental assessments of the area commence
- Late 2021 – Options analysis and concept design options developed
- Early 2022 – Decision made on preferred trail options
- Early 2022 – Designs developed and construction contract awarded
- Mid 2022 – Construction expected to start, subject to onsite conditions and any health restrictions in place at the time.
Latest updates as at November 2021:
- Consultants GHD engaged to complete concept designs, option analysis, and geotechnical investigations and environmental assessments.
- On site geotechnical investigations will take placed in late November/ early December between Sanctuary Lakes and Point Cook Coastal Park. Visitors may notice some machinery operating on site during this time.
Sea wall renovation at Point Gellibrand Heritage Park
The project includes funding to bring the sea wall at Point Gellibrand Heritage Park back to life. The seawall is damaged after many years of erosion from wind and waves and needs to be made safe so that locals and visitors can enjoy the area for many years to come. We will either repair or reconstruct the sea wall in 2022, following structural and technical investigations and obtaining relevant permits.
As part of this project we will consult Heritage Victoria and the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) to plan how we can make sure the heritage values of the sea wall are maintained, and that the coastal environment will not be impacted by our works.
Timeline for sea wall project:
- September 2021: Consultants SMEC engaged
- Spring 2021: Structural and geotechnical investigations of the sea wall commence
- Early 2022: Options analysis and concept design options developed
- Early 2022: Decision made on whether to repair or reconstruct the sea wall
- Mid-2022: Designs developed and contract awarded
- Late 2022: Construction expected to start, subject to on-site conditions.
Latest updates as at November 2021:
- Consultants SMEC engaged to complete concept designs, option analysis, geotechnical investigations and environmental assessments.
- On site geotechnical investigations will take place in late November/ early December at Point Gellibrand Coastal Park. Visitors may notice some machinery operating on site during this time.
Environment and cultural heritage management
The 21 parks receiving upgrades as part of this program have various heritage, cultural heritage and environmental approvals and permit requirements. We are working with the relevant approval bodies and Traditional Owners to obtain the relevant approvals, permits and plans for each park before we start works.
From October 2021 to early 2022, visitors will notice the following access changes at:
- Braeside Park: While the park and picnic areas will remain open, we will need to temporarily close the toilet block and restrict access to the picnic shelters at the Telford Picnic Area.
- Cardinia Reservoir Park: While the park and picnic areas will remain open, we will need to temporarily close the toilet block and restrict access to the carpark at Aura Vale Lake.
We'll update this page with access changes as the project progresses.
- Media release: Improvement works to kick off at Cardinia Reservoir Park
- Media release: Point Gellibrand sea wall one step closer to new life
- Media release: Melbourne cyclists to benefit from Bay Trail extension
What are the works and when will they be starting in my park?
Upgrades will vary depending on individual park needs, but may include new picnic shelters and tables, refurbished or upgraded toilets, carpark repairs, upgraded electric BBQs, replacement of playground equipment, signage upgrades and trail repairs.
Early works commenced in Braeside Park and Cardinia Reservoir Park in October 2021.
Works at the other parks will commence in 2022, following the necessary design and approvals processes. This page will maintain information on the project roll-out, including details of when works will start at your local park.
How are you deciding which upgrades happen first?
The timing and sequence of works will depend on a number of factors including technical designs, permit approvals, complexity of works, seasonality, peak visitation times and on-ground conditions such as site access.
What will happen to the old facilities such as picnic tables and shelters?
We’re developing a Recycling and Recovery Plan to identify opportunities for re-use and recycling of leftover materials.
Will I still be able to access my local park/trail during works?
Depending on the type of works, some areas of the park are likely to be unavailable for short periods of time during construction. This page will maintain information on the project roll-out, including details of when works will start at your local park.
Will new toilets be accessible/wheelchair friendly?
A major focus of the project is to make parks more accessible. Where possible, upgraded toilets will be made accessible for people with limited mobility or wheelchairs.
What are you doing to preserve the history of the seawall?
Parks Victoria will work with Heritage Victoria to obtain a Heritage Permit to complete these works and will work collaboration with Heritage Victoria to recognise and protect the heritage value of this asset.