New signs to enhance visitors’ experiences on Melville foreshore

Published on : Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Melville foreshoreThe cultural and natural values of the City of Melville foreshore have come alive with new signs and interpretation facilities to enhance visitors’ experiences of the Swan and Canning rivers in West Australia.

WA Environment Minister Albert Jacob said the three River Journey facilities at Bicton Baths, Point Walter and Heathcote were important for the way they highlighted significant cultural heritage stories from the Whadjuk traditional owners, along with the natural values of the area.

The River Journey project, funded by the State Government, through the Department of Parks and Wildlife, is part of a larger trail vision that will see similar developments along the Swan and Canning rivers. This includes a fourth interpretation facility at the Brentwood foreshore, due to be completed in June 2016.

“These facilities bring alive the rich history of the Swan and Canning rivers and reflect the social, economic and environmental significance of these wonderful natural assets,” Mr Jacob said.

“With the River Journeys, anyone coming down to the river can enjoy the Melville foreshore’s past and present in a contemporary way. As well as enjoying the magnificent view, visitors will gain an understanding of the Aboriginal history of the area and other historical events.”

To create the project, four Whadjuk traditional owners shared culturally significant stories that told of the creation of the deep water at Blackwall Reach and the Point Walter sandbar, as well as other natural features along the southern foreshore.

Wooden platforms link into pathways and are shaped into a multi-use space with seating, interpretation and improved access to the foreshore. Natural and cultural heritage information is shared through engraved quotes on aluminium frames with stories about each site, images and audio recordings.

The River Journey project has also developed two virtual trail guides that link the new interpretation facilities together. These guides can be accessed on a smart phone or computer by downloading either the Geotourist app or the Trails WA app.

One of the trail guides, Melville Water Riverpark Trail, runs 16 kilometres from the Fremantle Traffic Bridge to Canning Bridge. The second one kilometre trail guide, Jenna Biddi Yorga, meanders through Blackwall Reach Reserve. The trail guides provide an online trip planner, detailed maps, trail descriptions and points of interest combined with the new interpretation facilities.


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