CPG AUSTRALIA: Rooke Reserve is a new 1.5Ha parkland centrally located within a new residential development in Truganina, approximately 20km west of the Melbourne CBD. Its location and ultimately the site design of Rooke Reserve provides clearly defined pedestrian and bicycle connection to surrounding residential neighbourhoods, the Federation Trail bicycle network, Truganina South Primary School, Arndell District Open Space, Community Centre and Kindergarten, and Skeleton Creek. Play is central to the design intent of Rooke Reserve, with both structure and setting designed to facilitate the specific requirements for 2-5yr play, 5-12yr play and access for all play. Whilst structured play elements highlight specific play zones, they also act to trigger investigation of the sites texture, topography and materials.
The park design provides for the group and the individual. Whilst steel soccer goals, dual carriage slides and multi-person swings all encourage group play, there are moments within the park such as the “bellscape”, the basalt letters and the dry creek trail which allow the individual to explore and exist on their own. Play is also cross programmed with water sensitive urban design elements such as the dry stone creek trail. Collecting surface run-off from elevated lawn and garden beds this filtrates this water prior to distribution in lower level garden beds. Collection occurs within pre-cast concrete water tanks (underground) for irrigation re-use.
The texture and the topography of the Western Basalt Plains provide a narrative throughout many of the design elements of Rooke Reserve, with direct references made to the You Yangs, a steep granite outcrop rising abruptly above the contrasting Werribee basalt plains. Naturally occurring basalt ‘floaters’, uncovered during excavation and construction of the park and surrounding estate, were retained and reincorporated as the dry creek bed, reminiscent of neighbouring Skeleton Creek, and worked into the extensive dry stone walling, creating a link to the historic farming fences of the western plains.
Landscape Architecture: CPG AUSTRALIA
Project Title: ROOKE RESERVE
Location: Victoria, Australia
Design year: 2009
Year of Construction: 2010
Area: 1.5 Hectares
Budget: AU $1.5 million Dollars
Image credits: Andrew Lloyd Photography
Text: CPG Australia