Posted on 21. Oct, 2010 in Greening Victoria

The long-term environmental future of Melbourne’s iconic Yarra Park received a major boost today, as the Premier unveiled plans for a multi-million water treatment plant.

Mr Brumby joined Melbourne Cricket Club chief executive Stephen Gough to inspect plans for the $22 million project which will deliver 180 megalitres of recycled water to Yarra Park and the MCG precinct, ensuring the park survives for generations to come.

“Yarra Park is a Melbourne icon and this project will go a long way to ensure its long term future for generations to come,” Mr Brumby said.

“The Victorian Government and Melbourne Cricket Club are providing a combined $22 million towards the major rejuvenation of the park to ensure it remains a valuable community asset and continues to support major sporting events like the AFL Grand Final and Boxing Day Test.

“This underground plant will provide the MCC with a secure water source and deliver up to 180 megalitres of water per year, and reduce the MCG’s potable water use by around 50 per cent.

“Ultimately, this project will deliver a major boost to the gardens and trees in the area and ensure the community continues to enjoy access to this fantastic recreation space.”

Mr Brumby said the project would see the installation of an underground water recycling plant to distribute non-potable water to drought-proof the trees and gardens and for cleaning the MCG.

“Once complete the plant will deliver up to 180 megalitres of water each year and reduce the MCG’s potable water use by around 50 per cent,” Mr Brumby said.

“The provision of a reliable water source has been identified as being critical to the survival of the trees and garden beds here at Yarra Park.”

MCC President David Meiklejohn said plans for the park also incorporate the re-establishment of avenues of trees and the introduction of tree protection measures, tree planting and additional mulching, new garden beds, lawn upgrades, playground improvements and pedestrian paths.

“This project is an important environmental initiative for the MCC as we seek to reduce our reliance on potable water,” Mr Meiklejohn said.

“It is also a significant financial contribution from a private club towards improving the long-term health of public parkland at the MCG’s doorstep.”

MCG Trust chairman John Wylie declared the proposed works an excellent outcome for all users of Yarra Park.

“Yarra Park has always been an integral part of Melbourne’s wonderful parks and gardens landscape which defines the city,” Mr Wylie said.

“It holds a natural and special significance, in particular for community users and also plays an important supporting role for the MCG and surrounding sports and entertainment precinct, as well as providing an attractive and peaceful setting for the stadium itself.”

City West Water Managing Director Anne Barker said the Yarra Park water recycling project was an example of how water recycling could help meet our future water needs.

“With efficiency being the key driver of water use in the future, this project demonstrates the benefits of recycled water to maintain an essential community asset,” Ms Barker said.

“Importantly it will help to conserve our precious drinking water for the future and reduce the amount of treated effluent being discharged into Port Phillip Bay.”

The project is due to begin in December and water is expected to be ready for the 2011/12 summer.

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