Local Member, Minister Martin Foley visited Westgate Park on Friday 1 June to see the recently-delivered soil and to brush up on his mulch-moving and planting skills!
It was a Melbourne City Council initiative, supported by the State Government, to encourage the Metro Tunnel Project to offer this valuable soil to Westgate Park. It was dug up from the Edmund Herring Oval in St Kilda Road for an Anzac Station construction site.
Most of the soil has now been spread at the Southern Wetlands west where excavation for the ponds had uncovered a lot of concrete and other rubble and topsoil was scarce.
Some interesting facts about this project which make it a model of cooperation and partnerships:
- Our vision for the Southern Wetlands took shape back in 2012 when we asked the State Government to add this weed and rabbit-infested services reserve to the Park, having satisfied the many service providers whose drains, pipes and wires ran through the land, that their infrastructure would be safe
- Stage 1 – the eastern section was started in July 2014 and completed in 6 months at a cost of ~$250,000, mostly in earthmoving and shared path construction
- Stage 2 – the western section commenced in July 2017 and should be completed in June 2018 at a further cost of $125,000
- Generous grants from the Victorian State Government (the Port Phillip Fund and Community Action Grants), Landcare Australia and our Webb Dock neighbour, MIRRAT covered 25% of these costs – the rest raised over time from corporate planting days and other fundraising
- A 754 page report was done on the soil which demonstrated that it was suitable for use in parks
- 34 truckloads were delivered to the Park on 8 May