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Editions

Western Park to start next year

30 Jul 2013

Western Park to start next year Image

The State Government has unveiled a four-stage plan to deliver community facilities at the western end of NewQuay

The first stage of the four part “My Docklands” plan is an $18 million park and community oval, with construction expected to start in early to mid-2014.

Stage one will see the delivery of a large grassed area close to the Bolte Bridge.

The space will accommodate a multi-purpose football oval/soccer pitch, a community pavilion, a playground and an exercise circuit.

The design also allows for an AFL-sized oval if required in future.

Premier of Victoria Denis Napthine said the development would be the first of its kind in Docklands.

“The new Western Park is budgeted, planned and paid for and will commence construction within the next nine months,” Mr Napthine said.

“It will bring the western end of the Docklands precinct to life and turn unused, windswept space into a fantastic new sporting and community hub.”

Planning Minister Matthew Guy said the “My Docklands” plan aimed to deliver amenities that put the “community focus” back into Docklands.

“As Melbourne embraces its waterfront it is essential that public space and public attractions exist to give all Victorians the opportunity to see the beauty of our new waterfront suburb,” Mr Guy said.

Stages two, three and four of the plan are yet to receive funding

Stage two of the plan involves the delivery of at least three multi-purpose sports courts along with a barbeque and seating area.

Stage two will include the removal of the old wharf and redevelopment of the promenade, allowing continuous waterfront access between the Bolte Bridge and Harbour Esplanade.

Stage three of the plan involves the private construction of mid-rise residential developments, intended to offset the cost of the Western Park project.

It’s expected that development will follow a public bid process for the parcels of land.

Stage four of the plan is a pedestrian bridge between NewQuay and Victoria Harbour, which will form part of a 3.7 km running and walking track around Docklands, touted as Docklands own “tan track”.

But the idea of shutting off the mouth of the harbour with a pedestrian bridge has attracted the ire of local boat operators.

Docklands charter boat operator Jeff Gordon said the idea of closing the harbour off with a bridge was “completely wrong”.

Mr Gordon said a bridge would cut off boats, which were the whole point of the harbour and were one of the key elements people enjoyed about the area.

“It’s called Victoria Harbour, it’s not a pond or a lake,” Mr Gordon said. “If you want a tan track then you go to the Botanic Gardens.”

Mr Gordon welcomed the idea of green space and a place where people could play sport in Docklands and suggested a track running around the oval rather than over the water.

Places Victoria will start a feasibility study into the bridge in late 2013, but it is a long-term project and construction is not planned for at least another ten years.

Premier Napthine also invited Victorians to submit ideas for the name of the Western Park oval.

“We’re looking for a name that’s appropriate to this area, that recognises the history and opportunity in this area,” Mr Napthine said.

You can submit your ideas­­ at http://www.places.vic.gov.au

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