Friday, 13 May 2016

The Andrews Government is honouring its commitment to preserve the Healesville Freeway Reserve as public open space for the enjoyment of the local community.

The process to transfer the 35 hectares of undeveloped VicRoads land to the Crown, so it can be reserved and protected for public use, is well underway.

A community reference group held its first meeting this week, to ensure that the views of the local community are considered and reflected in the development of a master plan for the reserve. The reference group includes representatives from environmental, sporting and community groups, reserve users and relevant agencies and will work in partnership with the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) to guide a wider community engagement process in the coming months.

As part of the land transfer, Mirabooka House, a heritage listed building adjacent to the reserve will be sold. All appropriate safeguards are in place to preserve the heritage value of this building as part of the sale. The proceeds of the sale will be reinvested into the reserve in line with the master plan, developed in partnership with the local community.

The Healesville Freeway Reserve is home to Nadrasca Community Farm, Vermont Cricket Club, Morak Golf Course 18th Tee and areas of native vegetation within Bellbird Dell bush. It also provides a playground and sporting fields for local schools, as well as a recreation space for the local community.

Quotes attributable to Labor Member for Eastern Metropolitan, Shaun Leane:

“This first meeting of the community reference group brings us one step closer to fulfilling an election commitment to preserve the Healesville Freeway Reserve for the benefit of the community.”

“It is critical that people who use the Healesville Freeway Reserve and live near it, are able to have a say in how it is managed.”

“Community feedback will help inform the discussion about how the reserve will be best managed in the future.”