AN expert panel headed by Botanic Gardens chief Tim Entwisle has released proposals for the 22.5 hectares of open space that will be created by the Victorian Government's Caulfield to Dandenong Level Crossing Removal Project.
The $1.6 billion project will elevate three sections of the Cranbourne-Pakenham line in order to remove nine level crossings, with stations to be rebuilt at Carnegie, Murrumbeena, Hughesdale, Clayton and Noble Park.
The Community Open Space Expert Panel was created by the State Government to guide the development of the new public space created underneath the elevated rail line, and oversee its maintenance.
The Panel includes architecture, urban design and landscaping experts, as well as representatives from the local community, councils, the Bicycle Network and Victoria Police.
Key recommendations from the panel include:
- Seven dedicated recreation spaces that appeal to all ages and cater for both active and relaxing activities;
- New facilities that address things lacking in the surrounding areas – like more green space in the City of Glen Eira, outdoor event space in Clayton, and dog parks for Clayton and Noble Park;
- Native species planted in a way that encourages birds to move and feed along the park; and
- A new walking and cycling path running all the way between Caulfield and Yarraman with exercise pit stops, rest areas and bike repair stations.
The government will now consider the expert panel's recommendations in conjunction with the Level Crossing Removal Authority as work progresses towards final designs, set to be released later this year.