Project update 13 December, 2023.

Thank you to everyone who joined us at the drop-in sessions, submitted feedback and contacted Council with relation the three projects within the Williamstown Foreshore Precinct that were on public exhibition.

Council received significant interest with over 1000 contributions across the three projects during the eight-week consultation period. Given the large amount of feedback received, Council officers will be working through the responses over January to develop a “What we Heard” report, which will be published in March 2024.

Council will consider all suggestions, comments and concerns in conjunction with its stakeholders and relevant planning considerations when updating designs for each of the three projects.

Rifle Range Planting Plan

The Rifle Range Reserve is surrounded by wetlands, nature reserves, grasslands and residential areas. The reserve includes over 2 kilometres of the Bay West share trail with paths connecting to residential

areas. We are planning and designing improvements to the Rifle Range Reserve which include new tree plantings along the length of the Bay West share trail, enhancements to core habitat and minor upgrades to amenities. We are now seeking feedback on concept designs. Please click here to view the plans before submitting your feedback in the survey below.

Victoria’s climate is predicted to be warmer and drier with fewer frosts, more frequent, intense downpours and less rainfall in winter and spring. Melbourne’s urban areas are, on average, predicted to be over 8˚C hotter than non-urban areas. Heatwaves are predicted to be more frequent and last longer. Heatwaves can cause critical urban infrastructure to malfunction or fail, and interrupt health services such as medical supplies, hospitals and emergency services. Heat waves have been linked to higher hospital admissions, illnesses and fatalities. The elderly, the very young, infirm and the economically disadvantaged suffer the most in these conditions.

Hobsons Bay’s Urban Forest Strategy has identified priority locations across the LGA including active transport corridors such as cycleways, waterfront and coastal trails.

Council has mapped 61kms of shared paths. Many of these have ample opportunity to improve shade cover, improve landscape amenity and enhance biodiversity as many run alongside waterways. Increasing canopy cover along shared paths will provide among the greatest benefits to the local community of all parkland plantings as they will provide shade to the most frequently used assets within the municipality.

The section of Bay West share trail that runs through the Rifle Range and to the foreshore in Williamstown must be considered a priority for tree planting, as the pathway is highly utilised.

This project requires consultation to ensure a design that balances the needs of the community, prior to being carried out.

Council acknowledges the creation of the Vegetation Management Plan for the Rifle Range in 2013. The purpose of the document at the time served to address the illegal removal and poisoning of species within the reserve. The plan also guided the enhancement of landscape character in the reserve. Since its creation, multiple strategies and policies have been adopted by council that supersede the Vegetation Management Plan. Awareness around the state of the climate has increased and practices that support mitigation and adaptation have evolved. The Vegetation Management Plan is no longer considered as sufficient to provide for the environment and our community into the future.

2018 Open Space Strategy 2018-28

The Open Space Strategy provides a framework for Council to set priorities and make decisions on the maintenance, upgrade and development of both existing and new spaces or facilities, which will cater for the current and future needs of the Hobsons Bay Community.

2020 Urban Forest Strategy

Hobsons Bay City Council has a vision for an urban forest that creates a liveable city and a better urban environment that contributes to the health and wellbeing of our community. The Urban Forest Strategy aims to increase the city's tree canopy to 30 per cent by 2040.

2022 – Response to Climate Change Action Plan

Hobsons Bay is rising to the climate change challenge with actions to increase the resilience of people, homes, businesses and infrastructure across our community. Our coastal location means Hobsons Bay is particularly vulnerable to the effects of climate change, which is impacting our community’s health, our homes, our natural and built environments, and the cost of living. Action is essential to benefit current and future residents.

Approved tree species

The Banksia integrifolia, Coastal Banksia has been selected as the preferred tree species due to its suitability for this location. The Banksia genus also aligns with Council’s tree diversity targets and provides a valuable food source to native fauna.

Artist impressions

The illustrations provided are an artist’s impression of the estimated tree height 20 years from planting.

Existing view: Existing view Proposed view: Proposed view
Existing view: Existing view Proposed view: Proposed view

Survey closed

What can and cannot be influenced?

Consultation sessions

If you cannot attend, and would like to speak with us regard the Rifle Range Planting Plan, you can write to or call our Arboriculture team to speak with one of our team members on 9932 1289.

Join us at the below events to view the plans for each project and have your say!

Saturday 21 October 2023 10:00 am to 12:00 pm

Drop-in session

Williamstown Swimming and Life Saving Club

The Esplanade, Williamstown

This event will occur inside the building in the event of poor weather.

Sunday 12 November 2023 09:00 am to 02:00 pm

Drop-in session 2

Williamstown Farmers Market

Robertson Reserve, corner of Cole and Hamner Streets, Williamstown