Eltham Gateway Project
- Project typeLandscaping and revegetation
- Project valueFunded by Nillumbik Shire Council and Major Road Projects Victoria
- Project scheduleTo be completed in stages starting October 2022
Nillumbik Shire Council is working in partnership with Major Road Projects Victoria (MRPV) and the Southern Gateway Renewal Group (SGRG) on a community-led project to revitalise the southern gateway into Eltham.
The Eltham Gateway Project will focus on rehabilitating and enhancing areas on both sides of Main Road, between Falkiner Street and the Diamond Creek Bridge, and is a response to the construction of the new intersection at Fitzsimons Lane.
The aim of the project is to create a sense of arrival into Eltham and the Green Wedge Shire of Nillumbik by reclaiming public open space and revegetating underutilised roadside areas.
The project will acknowledge the traditional owners of the land using indigenous planting and the creation of a public artwork on the northern side of Main Road.
Project update - March 2023
Timber milling on site at Eltham Lower Park has seen the timber from the removed pine trees repurposed into:
- fencing posts and rails for Edendale Community Environment Farm
- timber for the restoration of a seat at Alistair Knox Park
- timber for local Men's Sheds and local timber working groups to work with
- sleepers for future parks projects
- sleepers for Eltham Men's Shed Incorporated gardens
- a giant Jenga set for Community Events!
- all the posts and sleepers needed for the Eltham Gateway project.
Project update - 30 April 2023 - Community Planting Day and Official Opening
The completion of the Eltham Gateway Project will be celebrated with a community planting day and official opening on Sunday 30 April 10am-12pm.
Vicki Ward MP, Member for Eltham, Nillumbik Shire Mayor Cr Ben Ramcharan, Deputy Mayor Geoff Paine, Councillors, Major Road Projects Victoria, the Southern Gateway Renewal Group and community members will come together to celebrate this community milestone.
The community tree planting will take place between 10am and 11am followed by a sausage sizzle.
The official opening will be at 11.30am.
Bring gloves and sturdy shoes if taking part in the tree planting.
Project update - April 2023
The major public artwork has been completed and delivered on site.
The sculpture, which is made of weathering steel, has been created by Nillumbik artist Maureen Faye-Chauhan and intended to celebrate the Shire’s unique bushland and acknowledge the Traditional Owners, the Wurundjeri Woi-wurrung people.
Wurundjeri Elders have chosen the title for the sculpture, ‘Gunga winhanga warr bundha ba winhanga warr djurring’ in traditional Woi wurrung language, meaning ‘Take what you need and not what you greed’.
Project update - February 2023
Following tree removal and pruning, and resting of the soil over summer, landscaping works have started on site.
Behind the temporary fences along the south side of Main Road, in the Area known as Area “A” in the landscape design, works include the clearing of weeds, ground preparation and the construction of pathways, boardwalks, and seating. This is expected to take two to three months. Revegetation works are anticipated to begin in April, with the onset of cooler weather.
ID Landscaping (formerly known as Indigenous Design Landscaping) have been engaged to complete this work on behalf of Nillumbik Shire Council and MRPV.
Maureen Faye-Chauhan was announced as the successful artist for the key piece of pubic art on 17 February 2023. The sculpture has been named by Wurundjeri Elders and is titled: ‘Gunga winhanga warr bundha ba winhanga warr djurring’ in traditional Woi wurrung language, meaning ‘Take what you need and not what you greed’. Read our news release about the announcement.
Project update - October 2022
The first stage of the rehabilitation of the area, tree removal and pruning has now been completed.
This area is now being rested. Pine trees can cause the surrounding soil to become acidic and testing of the soil will take place to determine if any further treatment is needed before the next stage of the project. This will also allow the site to settle and for any necessary weed removal.
Most of the removed timber will be repurposed. The suitable timber from the Monterey cypress pine trees will be milled for re-use in the landscape design for boardwalks, signs, posts or fencing. Mulch and wood chips from the tree removal will also be used for landscaping works - these are resting over the summer to reduce their acidity.
The two stumps of the large Monterey cypress pine trees have been left "in-situ" for further incorporation into the landscape plan.
The masterplan was developed by local consultants Indigenous Design after consultation with Nillumbik Shire Council and key stakeholder groups.
Community consultation during July and August 2022, in which more than 160 responses were received, informed the final design, which was endorsed by Council in September.
The final plan will see the revegetation of the area with indigenous species and the addition of a walking path, seating and signage and a key piece of public art. The project area includes the sub areas of: A, B-North, B-South, C-North and C-South.
Click the image to expand.
As part of the rehabilitation of the area, a number of trees that were dead, hazardous, in poor health or classed as a weed have been removed.
All trees within the project area, a total of 226, were assessed by an independent arborist for tree health, structural issues, risk and hazards. Trees were also assessed for origin, species type, and likely end of life.
Older and larger trees are more likely to drop branches, or cause root conflicts beneath the surface.
A number of trees, particularly in area “A”, were pine trees planted decades ago and nearing end of life.
Of the 226 trees, 171 or 76 per cent, were assessed as healthy, and have been retained.
Twenty-two of the trees required some pruning.
Thirty-three trees, or 15 per cent, were identified as requiring removal for one or more of the following reasons:
- the tree was dead
- the tree health was ‘poor’ or ‘fair’, and tree is non-indigenous
- the tree was a ‘weed’ to the natural environment of Area ‘A’, bordering the Diamond Creek
- the tree would provide significant future risk if left in place.
The public artwork, will be located to the north of Main Road near the Diamond Creek Bridge in the area known as Area C - North.
It is intended to create a sense of arrival into Eltham and the Shire of Nillumbik, acknowledge the Wurundjeri Woi-wurrung people, reflect the identity, character and history of the local community while interpreting the landscape and surroundings of the site. The artwork theme mirrors community feedback.
A number of local artists, Nillumbik-based creative groups and art organisations were approached in August 2022 to respond to the artwork brief document, and submitted their concepts on 12 September 2022 for review by the project control group and relevant community stakeholders.
The successful artist, Maureen Faye-Chauhan, was announced on 17 February 2023. The sculpture has been named by Wurundjeri Elders and is titled: ‘Gunga winhanga warr bundha ba winhanga warr djurring’ in traditional Woi wurrung language, meaning ‘Take what you need and not what you greed’. Read our news release about the announcement.
The sculpture will be viewable from all directions with the front (south facing) targeting traffic heading to Eltham, while the back (north facing) will be seen by pedestrians using the pathway.
- Funded by Nillumbik Shire Council and Major Road Projects Victoria.
571 Main Road, Eltham 3095 View map