Landscape construction work has commenced at Davis Park, in Moorookyle, Tarneit, which is a local neighbourhood park incorporating a number of elements of historical interest while responding to recreational needs, drainage requirements and environmental sustainable re-vegetation goals.

Historical Background and Approvals
A favourable assessment of the Werribee Plains (to the west of Melbourne) in 1824 resulted in the region surrounding Davis Park being one of the first areas utilised for grazing after the arrival of Europeans in the 1830s. Pastoralists began to settle in the area in the 1850s and during the 1890s large estates were subdivided for farming purposes.

A number of features associated with a complex of domestic buildings are still present in a section of Davis Park known as the heritage zone, including bluestone foundations and a section of wall, one tank stand and two wells.

In the heritage zones, Heritage Victoria has required careful excavation and construction practices and the onsite presence of a heritage consultant while work is carried out.

Park Design
Davis Park has been designed to showcase a number of historical elements, thereby creating a link between the park and current residents. The design approach is to translate the typical historical agricultural landscape of the western plains into a contemporary design with historic references – the old homestead overlooking the grassed paddock, wind breaking vegetation and low fences framing the landscape.

The old blue stone walls of the dwelling / out building will be partially reconstructed with careful repairs carried out to ensure safety and improve visibility. An orchard of fruit trees extends into the heritage zone, referencing past pastoral farming in a contemporary design element. Adjacent to the picnic node a herb garden is proposed. Indigenous and native plants surround the heritage zone and picnic node creating a drought tolerant landscape with habitat for native birdlife. At its core the park is a retarding basin which is designed to slow stormwater runoff during storm events and function as an open grassed area with cricket pitch when dry.

A granitic sand path will wind around the core, connecting two exercise stations within Davis Park with another six exercise stations strategically located within the Moorooklye open space network to form the Moorookyle exercise track.

Davis Park is a multi-dimensional space which endeavors to respond to the complexity of heritage requirements, recreation needs, drainage infrastructure requirements and environmentally sustainable re-vegetation goals.