Carome Homestead on “Community Designs”
Hansen Senior Urban Designer, Danielle Jewson was featured in the latest episode of “Community Designs”, discussing our work of the historic Carome site, in Whittlesea (the above video skips to the 11.25 min mark). The property is located to the southeast of the future Mernda Activity Centre in metropolitan Melbourne’s north-east. Carome is a unique as a place which remains a largely ‘rural’ character is a fast urbanising landscape.
Carome sits within the Plenty Gorge Parklands, managed by Parks Victoria and overlooks the Plenty River, but is managed by Working Heritage, a Committee of Management appointed by the Victorian Government under the Crown Land (Reserves) Act 1978. Their role is to conserve heritage properties located on Crown Land for sustainable and viable commercial and / or community use. This agenda of adaptive reuse of heritage forms and community use was fundamental to the work Hansen undertook for the site.
Hansen Partnership were engaged to develop a Site Management Plan to guide both decisions around new built improvements, but also policy approaches to the site’s management. The Site Management Plan document presented a strategic vision that focuses attention on key heritage assets, while ensuring that the underlying responsibilities of Working Heritage in managing the land are advanced and recognising the contribution that the use and development of the site can make to local and regional communities. It provides both spatial directions and initiatives for on-site works and management initiatives which together will ensure the coordinated and sustainable management of Carome into the future.
The Masterplan for the site identified the opportunities available to offer a range of broader connections with surrounding Parks Victoria land and activities from the Carome site. Works have already commenced to connect a new shared path through the site to broader Parks Victoria networks and improve the existing Community Garden. Future initiatives will see improved connections to the river frontage and greater integration of culture and educational uses across varying parts of the site, further strengthening the role the site plays in community life. Other opportunities to build on the tourism and event potential of the site were also identified in the Site Management Plan. The Plan will see the existing built form complemented by a series of sensitive insertions and works within the surrounding space to enhance visual connections, while ensuring future development adopts a form which complements both the heritage fabric and the important landscape setting.
Our pleasure at being part of the planning and design for such an interesting and important site is evident, and we look forward to our continued involvement in the sites evolution.
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