Success through community involvement

Example of 5 creeks project in fairfield, sydney

Perhaps we in the Armidale Regional Council region can learn from others?

Sydney Morning Herald, March 20, 2001

Sydney Morning Herald, March 20, 2001

Way back in 2001,  our earlier Creeklands Visions committee was told about an exciting development in Fairfield, Sydney, where a concrete-lined creek was being restored to a natural, functioning, meandering stream.  

“State-of-the-art bioengineering techniques have been adopted: cells to reinforce and restrain the vegetated topsoil, biodegradable geocomposite matting to prevent erosion, non-hyphen woven geofabric to stabilize weirs, and reinforced turf to withstand flowing water”.

“An artist was hired to work with schools and community groups to produce a series of designs and ideas”.

At the time, we tried to get these sorts of ideas adopted by Armidale Dumaresq Council but ...

Quote from the 5 Creeks Strategic Plan (2005)

"The “Restoring the Waters” project in the upper reaches of Clear Paddock Creek, St Johns Park, demonstrates clearly what we can do to “reclaim” the 5 Creeks.
Near the St Johns Park Bowling Club, curved grassed banks have replaced a 500 metre section of concrete channel. Stone riffles aerate the water, improving its quality.  This careful “restoration” has not only enhanced the natural environment but exists in harmony with its human landscape". 

"A Strategic Plan for the 5 Creeks was prepared with active community involvement and has as its vision:

  • Creeks that are “clean” - good enough for fish to thrive
  • Creeks in a “safe environment” – a safe waterway for community use while keeping properties protected from flooding
  • Creeks with “people places” – picnic areas connected by pedestrian and bicycle paths
  • Creeks with an “enhanced natural environment” – creeks in a natural landscape setting habitat for native animals, birds and insects
  • Creeks surrounded by “complementary development” – development that fronts the creek instead of the creeks being considered as a “drain in the backyard".