Planting the sustainable garden

by Kate C
Publish date
20 January 2011
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From the 1950s to 2009, the western forecourt of the Royal Exhibition Building was an asphalt car park - useful, but hardly befitting the World Heritage classification of the site. Certainly there was no trace of the ornamental garden planted there for the 1880 Melbourne International Exhibition.


Cue World Heritage, World Futures: a major project that began in October 2009. Funding for this project was provided form the Victorian Property Fund on the approval of the Minister for Consumer Affairs.

The project's three phases: excavation of the site to recover artefacts from the original 1880s garden, installation of an enormous rainwater storage tank, and restoration of the heritage garden and circular drive - are almost complete. 

Landscapers have installed the watering system and are now preparing the ground for planting. Within the next month the project will be finished and a beautiful water-wise garden will return to Rathdowne Street.

Watering system laid out at REB This extensive watering system will use the water from the new rainwater storage tank to ensure the garden stay lush and green sustainably.
Source: Museum Victoria

So keep an eye on the final flurry of activity behind those purple hoardings this month; the World Heritage, World Futures blog contains posts on the project's progress from the very beginning if you'd like to know more.

Hoardings around the REB Hoardings around the project building site with a glimpse of the restored circular driveway.
Source: Museum Victoria


Royal Exhibition Building

World Heritage, World Futures

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About this blog

Updates on what's happening at Melbourne Museum, the Immigration Museum, Scienceworks, the Royal Exhibition Building, and beyond.