Barwon River Parklands project
The Barwon River is integral to the natural environment in Geelong and it is a source of much of Geelong’s water supply. The river is a popular recreation area for activities including walking, cycling, picnics, rowing, boating and fishing.
The Barwon River Parklands project aims to protect the natural environment, providing open space for the health and enjoyment of a growing community, providing greater protection of the Barwon River, increasing awareness and appreciation of natural and cultural heritage and providing new recreational assets linking facilities along more than 32 kilometres of the river from Geelong across the Bellarine Peninsula.
The parkland is being created by linking a chain of existing parks and reserves through cooperative management, and adding important connections between these areas. See map for details.
The public land along the Barwon River falls within the jurisdiction of Parks Victoria, Barwon Coast Committee of Management (BCCM), Corangamite Catchment Management Authority (CCMA) and the City of Greater Geelong Council. There is significant private land abutting the river south of the Breakwater Bridge and other freehold land such as the Ovoid Aqueduct site managed by Barwon Water.
Parks Victoria is the lead agency in a partnership of management agencies:
- City of Greater Geelong Council
- Barwon Water.
- Barwon Coast Committee of Management
- Corangamite Catchment Management Authority
- Department of Environment and Primary Industries
- Department of Planning and Community Development
Project Achievements 2007-2011
In the first four years there have already been many achievements for this project.
- A 5 year Memorandum of Cooperation (MOC) signed in July 2009 by each of the land managers and all partner agencies involved with the project.
- Open house forums, community surveys and feedback in late 2009 used to take forward planning and delivery.
- Capital works establishing visitor areas such as Taits Point and Ash Road on Lake Connewarre, track establishment at Barwon Heads, and trail realignment and connections at Newtown and Highton.
- Almost $200 000 has been invested in pest plant and animal control programs. This investment has been directed to areas consistent with the priorities contained in the regional catchment strategy.
- Woody weed removal along the main CCMA managed sections of the river through Geelong, roadside reserve clean ups in Leopold, and wetland and birdlife habitat establishment at both Highton and the Barwon River delta have made a real impact across park sites.
- A draft Strategic Direction Plan has been prepared. It has incorporated findings of base documents such as the draft trail concept alignments, community consultation, Ovoid Aqueduct and various detailed connection studies.
- Community support programs and sponsorship of various events. The Blokes Day out, Catch-A-Carp Day, Clean Up Australia Days and the Karingal Family event held on the banks of the river in Belmont are examples of these successful programs.
- A “River Host” volunteer program run on the lower estuary in the summer of 2009, via local Fishcare volunteers, further supported environmental programs in the parklands area.
The multi-agency MOC signed in July 2009 remains current mid way through its initial five year term. Strong agency support and understanding remains for this parkland establishment initiative.
The parklands project has identified a further 23 key directions in the draft Strategic Directions Plan.
In addition to finalising this plan, the Steering Committee will prepare a concise business plan for the next two years which will focus on the transition from an ‘establishment’ phase to one of ‘consolidation’. Areas to be considered will include;
- alignment with Federal, State and Local government policies and directions;
- securing additional funding options such as grants and business sponsorship; and
- developing stronger volunteer and community engagement in delivery of programs.
Partnerships and alignment with regional programs will continue to be a focus. These include the strong alliance with G21 and support to the innovative ‘green scripts’ pilot program funded by Medibank Private which is seeking to extend this program nationally.
Enjoy the parklands
06 Mar 2014
Clean Up Australia Day events held at Kalimna Park and Golden Point Reserve over the weekend resulted in 4 cubic metres of rubbish being removed from the bush in and around the Castlemaine Diggings National Heritage Park. Active community members of Castlemaine and Chewton spent their Sunday collecting rubbish including…
12 Mar 2014
The Grey-headed Flying-fox is the largest flying-fox (also known as a fruit bat) species in Australia. Each month the Australian Research Centre for Urban Ecology conduct the monthly bat count at Yarra Bend Park at dusk on the Wednesday evening closest to the risen full moon. This data is critical…
15 Mar 2014 9:00am - 16 Mar 2014 5:00pm
The Back to Steiglitz community art group will have an exhibition in St Paul's church, Steiglitz. There will be 4 artists displaying their works in a variety of mediums and styles. Historic buildings will be open to the public. The Back to Steiglitz group will provide food and drinks for…
23 Mar 2014 9:00am-3:00pm
Help create koala habitat and learn about koalas. Enjoy a day helping Koalas in the wild. Search for koalas, monitor their behaviour, remove weeds from their habitat and take records of all other wildlife seen, all in the company of a highly experienced Koala Researcher. Part of the day is…
23 Mar 2014 11:00am-3:30pm
Live.Grow.Explore. Community Day brings community together to explore their broader backyard and to learn more about sustainable lifestyle choices in one of Melbourne's most extensive landcare and reinvigoration corridors. This FREE family event and BBQ lunch showcases many sustainable education stalls. The day includes Vasili Kanidiadis of Vasilis Garden to…
Happy International Women’s Day! Photo: Ranger Deb Cross at the Gil Groggin Fir...Happy International Women’s Day! Photo: Ranger Deb Cross at the Gil Groggin Fire north of Buchan.View post | Sat, 08 Mar 2014 09.42
The Mt Zero area in Grampians National Park has re-opened in time for the long w...The Mt Zero area in Grampians National Park has re-opened in time for the long weekend to provide visitors with a walking experience in the Northern Grampians. Many areas in the park are now open after the fire in January. Full details here http://ow.ly/ukBMTView post | Fri, 07 Mar 2014 17.11
Thanks to all our Facebook friends who have sent in their favourite park photos...Thanks to all our Facebook friends who have sent in their favourite park photos this week to help inspire your next park visit. Enjoy your local parks and beyond this long weekend to help celebrate the end of Parks Week.Friends Parks Week photosThanks to all our Facebook friends who have sent in their favourite park photos this week to help inspire your next park visit. Enjoy your local parks and beyond this long weekend to help celebrate the end of Parks Week.View post | Fri, 07 Mar 2014 13.45
Introducing the newest recruit to join the Werribee Park horticultural team, See...Introducing the newest recruit to join the Werribee Park horticultural team, See Me. He is from the Karen people of Burma and lived for 15 years in a refugee camp before coming to Australia. See Me is being sponsored by Matchworks and will be working with us for the next 11 months while he completes a Certificate Three in Horticulture. We’re celebrating the many park connections with Victoria’s rich multicultural community during Parks Week. http://ow.ly/ui2jQView post | Thu, 06 Mar 2014 16.14
Clean Up Australia Day events at Kalimna Park and Golden Point Reserve last week...Clean Up Australia Day events at Kalimna Park and Golden Point Reserve last weekend resulted in 4 cubic metres of rubbish being removed from the bush in and around Castlemaine Diggings National Heritage Park. We would like to say a big thank you to all the volunteers for their efforts on the day. http://ow.ly/uhMnvView post | Thu, 06 Mar 2014 11.43