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Building and park projects

A Park Close to Home

'A Park Close to Home' aims to create and improve access to open space in areas of Merri-bek with no parks in walking distance.

We want to prioritise the work that comes out of this plan so we can first address the areas that most need open space. This is why the plan rates gap areas as high, medium or low porosity based on:

  • Population density in the gap area
  • Future population growth in the suburb
  • The number of properties or population in the gap area
  • The existing open space amount per person by suburb

A Park Close to Home documents:

  • In our Merri-bek Open Space Strategy we define open space as land that:

    • hosts leisure or sport
    • has landscape value
    • is used for habitat conservation
    • has an environmental amenity function
    • has a visual amenity function

    It can also be zoned or reserved for public parks or conservation purposes. Open space can also be a paved are rather than green space, such as in a town square, mall or plaza.

  • We are currently delivering on this plan by building parks in some of the areas that need them the most.

    We have announced our intention to build parks in the following locations:

    As we plan these parks we want to hear what you think and keep you up to date with our progress. To have your say or sign up for updates, visit Conversations Merri-bek website.

  • Many people are choosing to make our area their home, so our community is growing. This places pressure on all our existing infrastructure, including open space. To address this, we are investing in our parks and creating new parks in areas with low access to open space.

    Creating new open space is also part of the 2017 to 2021 Council Plan. This plan includes the creation of at least two new parks in areas with the lowest access to open space. A Park Close to Home will help us to deliver this.

  • We created A Park Close to Home with input from across our organisation. Many of our staff gathered the research for this plan and helped with the decisions we made. They will continue to assist us with this while we deliver this plan.

    We also consulted with the community on the draft of A Park Close to Home in October 2017. We considered what they raised in the final version of the Park Close to Home plan.

    At the 6 December 2017 Council meeting, our Councillors considered a report that:

    • detailed the issues the community raised
    • provided a response to the issues identified
    • recommended that Council accept the final version of A Park Close to Home
    • We included the final version of the Park Close to Home plan in the Council report for that meeting.
  • To help pay for new open spaces, we collect funds from developers when they subdivide land. We put this money into our Open Space Fund, which is for us to use for open spaces across Merri-bek.

    In September, our Councillors decided on the funds they would allow us to use for open space projects. They determined that 10% of the previous financial year’s income would go into the open space fund.

    We designed our Park Close to Home plan to guide how and where we spend this money. This will help us to prioritise park projects in areas where it is most needed.

    The Park Close to Home plan also proposes a proactive approach to land purchases for open space. Land purchases can come through negotiation of a sale with landowners, buying land through the open market, or getting land instead of a cash-based open space contribution. We may also consider lease or shared-use agreements.

  • In the short term we will be prioritising the gap areas in Merri-bek. This will mean that the open space needs outside of these areas will become a lower priority. But this does not mean that spending in these other areas will not occur.

    A Park Close to Home includes information about spending the fund on other open space needs. It says we must consider if this spending will prevent us from creating open space in the high and medium priority gap areas.

    We will also track the delivery of A Park Close to Home to ensure its ongoing effectiveness. This will allow us to make informed decisions on how we will divide the open spac

Get active Merri-bek enhancement project

This project will include work at 8 of our sites. Our plan is to build new:

  • circuit paths
  • drinking fountains
  • BBQ facilities
  • outdoor fitness equipment

The project will add to some of our already planned park renewal projects.

The Victorian Government have supported our Get Active Merri-bek Enhancement Project. They have given us a grant to fund this project. The grant comes from the Victorian Government Community Sports Infrastructure Stimulus Program.

Which parks are getting extra features?

The 8 sites included in the Get Active Merri-bek Enhancement Project are:

To find out more about the works at each of these sites take a look at their project page. You can find these in Council projects or on Conversations Merri-bek.

For further information please email Landscape Architect Phil Smith at or call us on 9240 1111.

Progress status of our reserve master plans

Below is a list of the our reserve master plan construction projects, along with the current status of each project, completion dates, and active projects that form part of each master plan.