The Swan Hill Riverfront Masterplan provides a strategic proposal for future improvements along the riverfront to reinvigorate this public open space and enhance its social, environmental, cultural and economic value. This living document relates to a 4.5-kilometre linear riverfront space situated between the Murray and Marraboor Rivers. It is an integral project for the future of Swan Hill and is an initiative in the Swan Hill Rural City Council Plan. The Council recognised the importance of community consultation during the development of the masterplan. This involvement has made the plan unique and representative of the community’s vision, and will strengthen ownership and respect for the area, allowing the preservation of a sense of place.
The Swan Hill Riverfront Masterplan aims to create an attractive and inclusive public open space along the Murray River where the local community and visitors can meet, shop, play and relax for generations to come. The process in developing the masterplan was a whole-of-community experience with more than 2,000 people providing feedback and information at various stages during its development. Since its endorsement by Swan Hill Rural City Council, initial projects as part of the masterplan have transformed this destination. These projects include the cleaning of the Riverside Park’s pond and installation of new lights on its water fountain and the realignment of the path from Riverside Park to under the Swan Hill Bridge. Additional projects include the installation of six outdoor fitness stations, drinking fountains, Murray Cod-shaped bike rack, designer recycle bins and car park developments which have facilitated a destination that encourages activity and interaction across the community. As part of the masterplan’s lighting strategy, LED energy-efficient lighting has been installed, including 23 light poles and lights, 12 tree up-lights and five solar lights along the riverfront from the wetlands to Brian Street. This has not only improved the safety of the area, but made it more accessible, encouraging community members to use the riverfront throughout the year. The masterplan has also seen the initial construction of the Swan Hill Riverwalk – a pathway providing an almost continuous link from Pental Island Road through to Milloo Street Wetlands and connecting with regional walking trails. Stage one saw the completion of a 1.5km shared path along the Swan Hill Riverfront from the caravan park to local wetlands. Stage two (for which funding has been received) will include the extension of the shared pathway from the Pioneer Settlement’s Paddle Steamer Gem to the levee bank along the Little Murray River. Works will also include improvements to the Swan Hill Regional Art Gallery, while road and carparks in the area will be re-aligned and formalised. The riverfront improvements have further encouraged community events within Riverside Park, which make full use of the new facilities. This includes a monthly Farmers Market, the Swan Hill triathlon and the Colour Your Run event. The annual Harmony Day, New Year’s Eve and Australia Day celebrations at Riverside Park also regularly attract up to two thousand community members and visitors. Additional projects planned as part of the Riverfront Masterplan include an Active Play Precinct (water, skate and play area) in Riverside Park, Japanese-themed garden, boat ramp extension and remediation of fuel depot sites.
- Swan Hill Rural City Council
Up to $55 million over 30 years
The Swan Hill Riverfront Masterplan incorporates many health, economic, environmental and social benefits, including the installation and development of infrastructure encouraging activity, accessibility and social inclusiveness.