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    Turning dull Waterloo space into colourful and productive place

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    ...by Russ Grayson, March 2012 IT COMBINED ELEMENTS of learning and doing, social benefit and placemaking. And it would go on the footpath in Waterloo. Put to me in such convincing terms by Sophie from the City of Sydney’s SAVE program (Sustainable Action and Values for Everyone—quite a mouthful and an acronym-driven name if ever I heard one), how could I refuse. First off, Sophie and I made the short journey out to Waterloo in a City Prius so that we could measure the footpath to see if it would be wide enough for the Salvation Army Waterloo Community Centre to build their footpath garden on. Plenty of room, it turned out, for the four proposed planters. I asked Sophie to make sure the builders consulted Dial-Before-You-Dig to check whether there were water or gas pipes, electricity or other cables below the footpath. Had there been and had the gardeners built a footpath garden directly on the ground itself, it would have had to be rebuilt had the utility needed to dig up the underground service for maintenance. That was the thinking behind the model of raised garden planter the City was proposing in its draft policy—something with a base that could be moved out of the way and later returned, was access to underground service needed. Next, I thought, why not try to prototype the type of planter the City was proposing in its draft Footpath Gardening Policy and locate it on the footpath to demonstrate the preferred offsets...



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