The Green Spine project is transforming central Geelong with a vibrant linear park along the length of Malop Street, connecting Johnstone Park and Eastern Park.

As part of the $382 million Geelong City Deal and the Victorian Government’s 10-year Revitalising Central Geelong Action Plan, the Green Spine is a key project to drive change in Geelong’s CBD and enhance business opportunities and tourism.  The Green Spine will connect Johnstone Park to Eastern Park and the Botanical Gardens via six blocks along Malop Street.

Construction on the second stage (Block 1) of the Green Spine project is now underway, between Gheringhap and Moorabool streets.

Stage 1 works on Block 1 will be carried out on the north side of the road and will provide a new entry to the city from Johnstone Park and the train station precinct. It will feature a landscaped triangle park, cultural heritage features from the Wadawurrung Traditional Owners, new trees, garden seating and alfresco areas. The single lane bike path on the north side of Malop Street will continue through this block.

Once complete, nearly a hectare of new green space will be added to the CBD, with a rich mix of native, indigenous and exotic plantings, as well as seating and alfresco spaces and public art. The mix of trees includes deciduous trees that allow shade in summer and increased sunlight infiltration in winter, addressing urban heat impacts and allowing the city to become more resilient to climate change impacts with a connected and strengthened ecosystem.

Malop St Artists Impression

The project encourages health and wellbeing and the use of active transport. It includes a safer cycling route spanning the length of the Green Spine, for those exploring or commuting on bike.

Along with its appealing, natural public spaces, Malop Street plays an important social and economic role in central Geelong. Local businesses are benefiting from the CBD becoming a destination for visitors and shoppers, with more people choosing to spend time in the city centre.

Consultation with the community and stakeholders, including businesses and residents that front Malop Street, is an essential part of the design phase for each block. Detailed planning work on the rest of the Green Spine, connecting greenery and bike lanes is also underway and the community will be engaged late-2021 to provide feedback.

The first stage of the project (Block 2), between Moorabool and Yarra streets was completed in July 2018.

Frequently Asked Questions

The Green Spine is a key project in the Revitalising Central Geelong Action Plan to drive change in the CBD and is being delivered through the Geelong City Deal. The 10-year Geelong City Deal involves the Australian Government, Victorian Government and City of Greater Geelong working together to deliver $382 million in government investment to the region supporting Geelong’s continued economic diversification, growth of the visitor economy and a thriving city centre.

A concept developed from a collaborative process between government and community in 2013 called Vision 2, the Green Spine provides a focal point for new development and improves the health and wellbeing of residents and visitors to central Geelong. It creates a new street hierarchy by reclaiming Malop Street as a pedestrian and bike-oriented environment, enhancing alfresco social opportunities, and underpins the establishment of a distinctive streetscape character. It demonstrates Geelong’s reputation as a modern, liveable, and vibrant city.

Winner in the Civic Landscape category of the 2019 Australian Institute of Landscape Architecture National Awards, the Green Spine will deliver important benefits to central Geelong, enhancing business opportunities by transforming the street into a drawcard for locals and tourists. The landmark linear public open space is an example of ‘biophilic design’ and will improve the urban environment by providing shade in summer, reducing the effect of wind, removal of air pollutants and filtering storm water. All these elements provide a calmer and more relaxing experience for visitors, thus encouraging them to stay longer in the CBD.

The section between Gheringhap and Moorabool Streets is referred to as ‘Block 1’ of the six city blocks in Malop Street that will form the Green Spine, connecting Johnstone Park to Eastern Gardens. In 2021, we are focusing on the north side of Block 1, with no construction planned for the south side of Malop Street. This will reduce the impact on bus services and city centre parking. The first stage will be the renewal of the pedestrian zone on the north side of the road, and the re-creation of the open space at the entry to Malop Street as the ‘triangle park’ in front of the Worksafe and NDIS buildings.

An ‘all-abilities’ standard will be applied to improve pedestrian movement along Malop Street, including connections to and from the new WorkSafe and NDIS buildings. The single lane bike path on the north sides of Malop Street will continue through this block.

Minor activities started onsite in October 2020 with survey works and early conversations with traders and property owners. The main activity began in January 2021, starting with drainage works at the Gheringhap Street end.  We expect to complete the north side construction of Block 1 towards the end of 2021.

To assist with safe access to businesses and around the works area, traffic management and pedestrian signage will be in place. We understand this may be disruptive and appreciate your patience.

We will be working with traders to minimise disruption, and ensure the community understands traders are ‘open for business’, with access maintained throughout construction.

The project team will be talking to businesses regularly to ensure they feel supported throughout 2021.

Over the summer period all applications for outdoor dining will be supported where the COVID-19 temporary outdoor dining permit guidelines are met. During construction, project partners will work with traders to minimise disruption to outdoor dining.

Along with regular updates on the RCG website, information about the Green Spine project and other RCG Action Plan initiatives are regularly published on the following platforms:

You can also ask specific questions regarding construction by emailing regionalwest.communications@roads.vic.gov.au

The number of parking bays will not change between Moorabool and Gheringhap streets. The Civic Car Park entry will also remain open on the south side of the street.

Works to the northern side of Malop Street between Gheringhap Street and Moorabool Street will progress to construct the Green Spine from the back of the road kerb to the building line. The second stage includes works to the southern side of the street to construct the botanical walk, alfresco dining spaces and renewed pedestrian pathway. The second stage will be programmed for delivery when funding is available and the future bus routes in central Geelong are known. As the strategic planning for the buses is reliant on other major projects in Geelong, the next Green Spine stage will be the design and construction of Block 3 between Yarra and Bellerine streets.

Contacts

General project enquiries

rcg@geelongcity.vic.gov.au or call 5272 4131

Australian Government logo, Victorian Government logo, Geelong Unesco City of Design logo, City of Greater Geelong logo, Revitalising Central Geelong logo

Page last updated: 22/03/21