By Medha Vernekar
As part of the “Green Your Laneway” pilot program, four of CBD’s laneways have undergone changes to include greener spaces.
The $1.8 million pilot program has transformed laneways such as the Coromandel Place, Guildford Lane, Meyers Place and Katherine Place with a green makeover by installing vertical gardens, climbing plants, trees, planter boxes and street art.
Some of these changes have rendered three of the four laneways to be partially closed to vehicles or have been made one-way for convenient access to pedestrians.
More than 800 public nominations and expert advice from a team of professionals including engineers, place-makers, landscape architects and sustainability professionals were used.
The City of Melbourne Environment Portfolio Chair, Cathy Oake, has stated how greener spaces in these laneways can help improve the city’s air quality while providing cleaner storm water.
“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” CR Oake said.
A number of Heat Health Alerts were issued by the State government this summer which has reinforced the importance of cooling our climate to prevent these 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,” Cr Oake added.
This pilot project comes as an initiative under “The New Cool”—a campaign that encourages collective action to combat rising temperatures and to help cool our city.