Melbourne's laneways go green

Friday, 02 March, 2018

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Four laneways in Melbourne’s CBD have undergone a green makeover as part of the $1.8 million Green Your Laneway pilot program, selected based on more than 800 public nominations and expert advice from a panel of engineers, sustainability professionals, place-makers and landscape architects.

Coromandel Place, Guildford Lane, Meyers Place and Katherine Place have been transformed using a mixture of planter boxes, vertical gardens, climbing plants, trees and street art. The City of Melbourne worked closely with the business owners, residents and workers to consider which type of greening would suit each laneway and three of the four laneways have been partially closed to vehicles or have been made one-way to improve amenity for pedestrians.

City of Melbourne Environment Portfolio Chair Cathy Oke said the upgraded green spaces show how laneways can be transformed with plants and trees to help cool the city, improve air quality and clean stormwater.

“By harnessing the enthusiasm of local residents and businesses, we’ve converted these laneways from a place for garbage trucks to move through to green community spaces,” Oke said.

“A lot of work has been completed underground, creating innovative infrastructure to capture and clean rainwater that will sustain the laneways’ plants and trees as they grow and create green coverage, provide shade and improve air quality.”

The project follows the issuing of a number of heat health alerts this summer, serving as a stark reminder of the importance of cooling our climate and preventing extreme heat events.

“We've got a target to cool the city’s summertime temperatures by four degrees and through our award-winning Urban Forest Strategy and projects like Green Your Laneway we’ve made great progress,” Oke said.

“Melbourne is famous for its laneways — we have over 200 of them — and this project shows how we can utilise the space to make our city greener, more sustainable and take action to cool the city.”

Image credit: © Maity

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