Draft plan for city's nature strips released

WARRNAMBOOL residents have an opportunity to voice their opinion on proposed guidelines for the design of their nature strips.

Warrnambool City Council voted unanimously to release the draft nature strip landscaping policy for public comment at Monday night’s monthly meeting.

The policy will be used to inform decisions on alternative nature strips and to provide guidance, transparency and information to the community.

It describes acceptable alternatives to grassed nature strips as:

  • Soft landscaping such as mulch with native grasses and shrubs less than 300 millimetres high; and
  • Granitic sand and gravel.

The policy notes any approved plants or grasses must be maintained by the resident and must not hinder car parking, passengers exiting cars next to the kerb or pedestrians.

Unacceptable alternatives include:

  • Vegetable gardens; 
  • Any plants that are declared noxious weeds from the Agriculture Victoria list; 
  • Additional trees; 
  • Synthetic turf; 
  • Hard surfaces such as concrete or pavers; 
  • Above ground irrigation systems; 
  • Raised beds, star pickets or timer stakes; and 
  • Compacted crushed rock.

Councillor Peter Hulin moved the motion to release the draft to the public for comment.

“I think this is a very positive move on behalf of the council,” he said.

“We could get some really good results from this.

“I’m not sure about not having vegetable gardens in nature strips – I’m not saying you would want them everywhere – but there might be some places where it could work.

“I also believe with the size of some of our nature strips, we should be able to have fruit trees included in those areas.

“We should be able to get a good environmental outcome from this.”

Cr Hulin voiced concerns about noxious weeds.

“I hope people understand agapanthus are a part of that,” he said.

Cr Robert Anderson said the policy was great idea.

“It will be interesting to hear the public feedback,” he said.

“It is a definite issue around the town.”

The community have 28 days to provide comment before the policy is presented to council for adoption.

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