Sister city garden takes root

A concept plan for the Jinan Garden.
A concept plan for the Jinan Garden.

A GARDEN to celebrate the City of Joondalup’s sister city relationship with Jinan in China has taken another step forward.

The garden had been included as part of the Joondalup performing arts centre project.

However, in 2017 the council voted not to proceed with the design development stage.

As part of a review of the performing arts centre project, City officers recommended the garden, estimated to cost $2.15 million, be progressed separately.

Councillors recently voted unanimously to list for consideration $260,000 in 2019-20 and $1.89 million in 2020-21 for its planning and development.

Joondalup’s sister city relationship with Jinan Municipal People’s Parliament of China has been going since 2000.

According to a council document, the partnership was established to “promote friendship, peace and cross-cultural awareness” and to “encourage and facilitate economic, socio-cultural and environmental exchanges”.

In 2009, the City engaged a landscaping consultant to develop a concept for the Joondalup Garden to be established in Jinan as part of the 7th China International Garden and Flower Expo. It was completed and opened in late September, 2009.

In 2012, the City engaged the same consultant to design the Jinan Garden to be established between the North Metropolitan Tafe building and the Central Park lake.

“Based on a design gifted by the Jinan Municipal People’s Parliament, the proposal is for the creation of a traditional Chinese walled garden,” the council document said.

“The garden design takes inspiration from the Baotou Springs Park in Jinan and incorporates a wide variety of traditional Chinese garden elements including a pavilion overlooking a formal pond to a waterfall and miniature mountain-scape beyond.”

It will include a gathering area for up to 70 people.

Work on the project to date includes interpretation of the Chinese design drawings, design development, a planting schedule, a procurement plan and location investigations.

The next steps include further capital and operational cost analysis, design development, location and funding investigations, and community engagement.

At the council meeting, Mayor Albert Jacob said the City had committed to constructing the garden 15 years ago.

He said the Joondalup Garden was now well established and it was time for the City to “keep its word”.

“We have the capacity to do it and a good location,” he said.

Cr Russ Fishwick said he was “embarrassed” the City hadn’t completed the garden by now.

“The sooner the better,” he said.

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