The Little Yarra River is an important tributary of the Yarra River in central Victoria. The reach upstream of Yarra Junction the Little Yarra intersects two major water supply pipetracks, which collectively provided an opportunity to create a network of shared trails to provide access to the waterway corridor and connect parks, schools and residential areas.
Mosaic Insights and Henry Landscape Architects were engaged by Melbourne Water to develop a concept plan and feasibility study for a shared loop trail along the Little Yarra River in the Yarra Ranges. Recent changes in the management of riparian land and linear pipe reserves provided an opportunity to increase access to this public land for recreation and active transport purposes.
The development of the trail design required careful investigation of the floodplain hydraulics to ensure the safety of trail users during flood events, detailed survey of the trees in the waterway corridor, and extensive consultation and engagement with a complex group of stakeholders.
The shared trail provides an opportunity for visitors and locals to connect with the river and also provides a number of key links between points of interest such as schools and open spaces. Mosaic Insights worked collaboratively with Melbourne Water to explore the feasibility of the trail and gain support for this innovative project that protects and improves ecological values and social accessibility.