The transformation of a former industrial site in East Perth, creating parklands and premium residential land, altered the Perth housing market and gentrified a disregarded area on the city fringe.
The Claisebrook Village project turned Perth’s 19th Century industrial service yard into a modern urban village. It was a major benefactor of the Federal Government’s visionary Building Better Cities program (1991-96). This facilitated substantial infrastructure improvements to the former East Perth Gasworks, scrap yards, brick works, stables, warehouses and railway yards.
Brookfield Multiplex sought to reflect the area’s existing qualities – the river and its heritage. It undertook the environmental rehabilitation and remediation of the former Gasworks site, Claisebrook Inlet Bio-Remediation and the landscaping of Victoria Gardens.
Environmental rehabilitation of the gasworks site was a major project in itself, as the largest contaminated site remediation project of its type in Australia. It required the demolition of buildings, relocation of trees, extensive earthworks, site drainage and subsoil groundwater interception drains.
As the first bio-remediation project undertaken in Australia, the site was cleansed of all toxic substances remaining from its previous use as the East Perth Gasworks. Brookfield Multiplex set strict environmental controls, which were enforced during the removal and remediation process.
The diversion of the Claisebrook main drain, including the dredging of contaminated fill from Claisebrook Inlet and the Swan River, required keen planning and innovative engineering techniques for the time. Landscaping works included the installation of 320 metres of sheet piling, foreshore construction and the construction of timber jetties and moorings and paving.
Control of contamination into the Swan River was overcome by the design and installation of a series of settlement ponds to filter the water before releasing it back into the river. The methodology included the use of absorbent booms to trap floating hydrocarbons, and the use of variable height weirs between the ponds. This project garnered Brookfield Multiplex the Western Australian ‘Earth Award’ for Environmental Excellence.
On the south-eastern edge of Claisebrook Cove, hard landscaping, vegetation and beautification of the parklands is now known as Victoria Gardens. Works included site feature surveys, concept design, foreshore assessment, soil contamination assessment, detailed design and development, construction and implementation.
Brookfield Multiplex stabilised the banks, controlled erosion and improved the landscape amenity, while protecting and enhancing the existing IllaKuri pathway.
The environmental clean-up improved stormwater and groundwater quality and transformed the riverside land into recreational parkland, creating open space with natural bush gardens, walkways and public art.
At the time, it was the largest project of its type in Australia and won three UDIA (Urban Development Institute of Australia) awards for environmental remediation. Brookfield Multiplex’s sustainable approach has ensured that the redeveloped site considers the environment long into the future.