What is Imagine Windy Hill?
This project aims to
create a single long-term vision for Windy Hill (also known as Essendon
Recreation Reserve) in Essendon that all parties have contributed to and with input from the community. The
vision will guide future development of the reserve. Before planning to make
any improvements to the facilities, Council wants to understand what the
priorities are and ensure that users of the reserve and the community in
general share the same ideas for the future of the Windy Hill precinct.
Why is Council doing this work?
The opportunity to think about how Windy Hill should be used in the future, who the users should be and what it should look like has arisen due to a number of reasons, including:
· Council has just completed its long term strategic plan, MV2040. A key part of this vision is ensuring our community has access to a variety of sports and recreation opportunities in their local area. More specifically it looks at activating Windy Hill for public use.
· The use of Windy Hill is changing, with the Essendon Football Club reducing its use of the reserve after moving its training base to Tullamarine. The emergence and growth of women’s sport and the growing population in Moonee Valley are also contributing to this change.The facilities are continuing to age and, at the same time, we are continuing to receive feedback from the community for more high quality public spaces.
Why is this vision long term? What is happening in the short term?
I don't want Windy Hill to change - it's an icon.
What about the Essendon Football Club?
What ideas could be included in the plan for the future?
We are planning to explore a number of sports and recreation opportunities at this location, and will be asking the question of the community in early 2019. Broadening community access and use of the site is something we will explore.
At this early stage of the project all ideas are being considered, no matter how bold! There are many possibilities and it is exciting to think about what is needed in the area, and how Windy Hill can continue to be a significant sport and recreation venue that the whole community is proud of.The project will also consider the areas surrounding Windy Hill, including connections with Essendon Junction.
What are the timelines for any redevelopment?
This is a long-term project and we are at the very early stages. The visionary work will be completed in mid to late 2019. Further work may be considered after this project, including:
1. Developing an improvement plan to realise the vision.
2. Seeking funding to implement the improvement plan.
3. Detailed design of the key improvement projects.
4. Construction of any agreed improvements.This process is expected to take many years.
What else is Council planning for in this precinct?
What are some of the main issues and opportunities that will be considered as part of imagining Windy Hill?
The creation of a vision for the future of Windy Hill will be guided by the community and users of the reserve. It is likely that the following matters will be raised for consideration:
· Ageing facilities at the reserve and the need to improve, redevelop or consolidate facilities.
· Future facility needs of the user groups.
· The concept of a multipurpose community building (hub).
· Other equipment and facilities to support recreational use by the public.
· Car parking and pedestrian connections into and around the site.
· Opening up the reserve.
· Connections to surrounding key sites, such as schools, public transport and the Essendon Junction.Landscaping and beautification.