16 March 2021

Botanic garden proposal to beautify Queanbeyan River

| Michael Weaver
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Queanbeyan Park

Queanbeyan Park in the centre of Queanbeyan. Photo: Supplied.

A proposal to build an extensive botanic garden in Queanbeyan will link the town’s river with the rest of the city while providing a major tourist drawcard akin to Canberra’s arboretum, according to Queanbeyan-Palerang Regional Council.

The project is part of the city’s ongoing beautification work on a parcel of land on both sides of the Queanbeyan River, from the existing Morisset Street low-level crossing, past Blundell Park, up to the railway corridor that defines the NSW/ACT border.

The botanic garden would connect the existing Queanbeyan River Walk with various spaces for locals to enjoy while acting as a tourist destination in the region.

Queanbeyan-Palerang Regional Council’s Service Manager Urban Landscapes Tim Geyer said the botanic garden could incorporate an arboretum and a range of Indigenous, Japanese and northern Macedonian plants that celebrate Queanbeyan’s Sister City relationships with Minami Alps City in Japan and a Friendship Agreement with Ohrid in northern Macedonia.

Mr Geyer said he hopes to present initial concepts and images to Council in the next four to six weeks before residents have their say on the look and feel of the area.

Queanbeyan-Palerang Council's urban landscapes manager Tim Geyer (3rd from right) with mayor Tim Overall (right) and residents on the proposed site for the botanic garden.

Queanbeyan-Palerang Council’s urban landscapes manager Tim Geyer (3rd from right) with mayor Tim Overall (right) and residents on the botanic garden’s proposed site. Photo: Supplied.

Mr Geyer told Region Media the proposal comes from a need to review the river corridor between the low-level crossing and the railway and provide an area that becomes one continuous parkland.

“The best way to describe the botanic garden is that it would be a series of spaces that join the existing spaces such as Blundell Oval and the peace park with a village green that could also be used for events and weddings,” he said.

“A playground could have a theme of ‘play and nature’ while using a botanical theme to introduce kids to nature and some of the ways we used to play in the old days.”

Mr Geyer said the proposal is in its infancy, so a landscape architect will be engaged to analyse the site to identify weeds for removal and native plants for protection.

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“Our aim is to workshop the proposal with councillors, which will then go out for community engagement. All that feedback will then go to the new councillors coming in [after NSW local government elections are held in September].”

Mr Geyer said the proposal would include an arboretum on a smaller scale than that in Canberra, along with many botanical trees that could be used for studies by students and council staff.

“More important is that we want ownership from the community on this and have a ‘friends of the botanic gardens’ group up and running,” he said.

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“This is a long-term legacy project that will be around for the next 50-plus years, just for the time it takes to grow the trees. It’s a project that can grow with the community, and we can add to it with things that represent the many cultures and stories of Queanbeyan.

“We see it as a great opportunity in the long-term for tourism in the city. It’s a short distance from the caravan park and the CBD. Eventually, we see the gardens as an area where the town could host an event with a theme that celebrates the gardens, similar to the cherry blossom festival at the Auburn Botanic Gardens in Sydney.”

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letterboxfrog9:52 pm 28 Mar 21

Let’s connect all of Quueanbeyan with bike paths and safe pedestrian crossings first, and ensure that ACT/Commonwealth allows direct connections to Canberra Airport, and the cycling infrastructure beyond.
Less roads, and less road-based urban heat. Healthier population means a better city for all. Botanical gardens are nice, but let’s be honest – Queanbeyan is a satellite city of the Canberra Metropolitan, and the council/NSW should be looking at how we can integrate to share resources and facilities with the ACT, and not duplicate where not necessary.

Ha! Surely you jest? QPRC & the NSW Government presently have it all over the ACT Government when it comes to municipal services. Everything in the ACT is run down, neglected and shabby. With a much smaller budget, QPRC looks after its domain competently, while many parts of Canberra are starting to look like Detroit. Why would Queanbeyan want to integrate with a crumbling empire?

Daniel Nugent9:17 pm 25 Mar 21

Botanic Gardens? Great idea – but the key is ongoing maintenance funding. Look no further than our underfunded National Botanic Gardens!

Capital Retro10:11 pm 25 Mar 21

No maintenance funding problems with the Glenloch tree plantation theme park, are there?

Daniel, it would be run by QPRC, not the ACT Government. And, unlike the ACT Government, QPRC has money and knows how to maintain things properly.

Capital Retro11:19 pm 21 Mar 21

Paul Tye, you are contradicting Professor Tim Flannery of the Climate Council who repeatedly said “the rain that actually does fall will never fill our dams……”

Did you see Waragamba Dam on TV today?

Tim Flannery claims he was misquoted. I’m glad there are records of his lies.

Here’s a transcript of the first question he was asked in a Landline interview on 11 February 2007.

SALLY SARA: What will it mean for Australian farmers if the predictions of climate change are correct and little is done to stop it? What will that mean for a farmer?

PROFESSOR TIM FLANNERY: We’re already seeing the initial impacts and they include a decline in the winter rainfall zone across southern Australia, which is clearly an impact of climate change, but also a decrease in run-off. Although we’re getting say a 20 per cent decrease in rainfall in some areas of Australia, that’s translating to a 60 per cent decrease in the run-off into the dams and rivers. That’s because the soil is warmer because of global warming and the plants are under more stress and therefore using more moisture. So even the rain that falls isn’t actually going to fill our dams and our river systems, and that’s a real worry for the people in the bush. If that trend continues then I think we’re going to have serious problems, particularly for irrigation.

Capital Retro9:58 am 22 Mar 21

Thanks for reiterating what he said in detail.

The warmists of course are in denial about this.

Agreed – unfortunately you can’t put brains in statues.

Daniel Nugent9:16 pm 25 Mar 21

How can a prediction by an eminent scientist who back’s his argument with good science, be considered a lie? Our rivers may be flooding – but the experts remain on the same page. This rainfall event is easily explained – sharp weather extremes are part of a warming climate. You can’t put brains in statues, but we do have them in universities.

Capital Retro2:19 pm 21 Mar 21

Floods are like bushfires – they happen every 20-50 years. And they are natural occurrences.

Capital Retro11:34 am 20 Mar 21

Great idea and without creating a fake river. Queanbeyan is looking more attractive every day.

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