The conversation

The draft Moonee Ponds Creek Strategic Opportunities Plan proposes a future vision to revitalise the creek corridor.

Community engagement on the draft took place from March to April 2019 and involved both online and in-person consultation.

The purpose of the engagement was to:

  • raise awareness for Council’s draft vision
  • gather feedback on the key themes and the strategic opportunities presented
  • mobilise community support for action along the corridor.
Macaulay landscape

A vision for Moonee Ponds Creek

Gathering insights

A range of methods were used to promote consultation and engage the public, including:

  • newspaper articles
  • social media posts
  • direct emails.

We invited the broader community, and particularly residents in suburbs neighbouring the creek, to participate in one of five 'pop-up' engagement stations, or to complete a digital survey. Traditional Owner groups, and 'friends of' groups were invited to individual consultation sessions.

Engagement metrics

Engagement metrics

What we heard

Top goals we heard

Participants were asked to select their top three of the six goals, which rated as follows:

  • Biodiversity (73%)
  • Open Spaces (68%)
  • Water Management (64%)
  • Movement (57%)
  • History & Culture (22%)
  • Collaborative Governance (16%)

Biodiversity

We heard:

  • Restoring the creek to a natural state, developing healthy ecosystems and building habitats for flora and fauna are all important.
  • Biodiversity is linked to public enjoyment. Natural spaces are an excellent opportunity for the public to engage with natural wildlife.
  • Litter and pollution negatively impact biodiversity in the creek.
  • Preserving nature and minimising species loss is a priority, with wildlife placed under increasing pressure from urban development and climate change.

Open Space

We heard:

  • Space is valued for activities such as jogging, dog walking, engaging with nature and enjoying the creek and surrounding environment.
  • Liveability and wellbeing are closely linked with open space – the creek provides an effective break from the highly developed city environment.
  • The current condition of Moonee Ponds Creek is viewed unfavourably and is visually unappealing. Open space is an important component of improving the aesthetic of the area.

Water Management

We heard:

  • Effective water management influences the success of other goals.
  • Flooding inhibits movement, disturbs open space use, threatens biodiversity, undermines the natural environment, damages surrounding infrastructure, and impacts open space usability.
  • Pollution in the creek is a problem, which degrades the natural environment and public enjoyment of the area.
  • Effective water management should consider climate change, improve liveability, and avoid the creek becoming a desert-like environment.

Movement

We heard:

  • The creek is a significant commuting corridor. Improvements should promote safe and efficient pedestrian and cycle movement.
  • Current conditions are criticised. Bike paths are uneven, poorly lit, overrun with weeds, subject to flooding and too narrow to accommodate current use levels.
  • Safety is a high priority for cyclists and pedestrians who want better maintained, well-lit trails. Cycle separation from pedestrians is necessary to support safe and efficient movement through the corridor.

History & Culture

We heard:

  • Recognition of Aboriginal peoples and their culture is valued highly.
  • Acknowledging the Aboriginal connection to Moonee Ponds Creek is a step towards righting past wrongs and respecting the importance of the area for Aboriginal peoples.
  • Educational opportunities through increasing public appreciation and understanding of Aboriginal peoples, knowledge and history are supported.
  • Breaking down cultural barriers and enhancing Melbourne’s identity is linked to this Goal.

Collaborative Governance

We heard:

  • Collaborative governance is deemed necessary to progress the development of Moonee Ponds Creek.
  • A variety of groups have linked interests, roles and responsibilities in the creek’s management.
  • Groups must work together to achieve productive and positive results.

Feedback we heard from community members in relation to each goal

Source:

Top opportunities we heard

Participants were asked to select three top opportunities from a list of 31.

Selected by 23%, Moonee Ponds Creek Cycling and Walking Trails Length of Creek was by far the most important opportunity for participants. We heard:

  • Separated, adequately maintained, well-lit and reliable cycling and walking infrastructure is needed to overcome the current poor state of the track and low perceptions of safety.
  • Walking and cycling network improvements will have flow on benefits that may entice thousands of users. There is potential to create a trail which is: a non-stop trip, the fastest possible route, cheaper than roads and pays for itself with health benefits.
  • Connected, active transport reduces congestion and environment damaging emissions.
  • Community cohesion and well-being can be enhanced through improved liveability, connections to nature and shared experiences.

Other opportunities that were selected as important by more than 15 participants were:

  • Moonee Ponds Creek Forest (10%)
  • Travancore Park Creek Naturalisation (9%)
  • Redesign of Bridges (8%)
  • The Connected Veloway (8%)

Consultation with Kensington Community Children's Co-operative

The Kensington Community Children's Co-operative (KCCC) explored ideas and concepts for Moonee Ponds through an art experience, following conversations with the children in their classrooms. Children were invited to come and represent their ideas through art expression, natural materials and conversation.

Next steps

Your feedback is helping us revise our Moonee Ponds Creek Strategic Opportunities Plan. This plan will then be recommended for endorsement by the Future Melbourne Committee later this year. The vision and priorities articulated will provide Council with a formal position from which to advocate to other parts of government, guide future development assessments, and to better facilitate collaboration across the full length of the creek corridor.

Your feedback is also being shared with and considered by the Victorian Planning Authority (VPA), who is tasked with undertaking further in-depth technical and feasibility studies to understand costs and implementation issues. The insights gathered will provide them with an understanding of which Goals are most important and why, as well as the range of Opportunities for creek improvement that have the most support. The VPA will formulate advice to the Victorian Government later this year, about how to move forward with the creek’s revitalisation, including any possible short-term project opportunities.

Opportunities for Moonee Ponds Creek