Victoria News & Events

News from Victoria Chapter 20 March 2017

What a couple of weeks it has been and there is so much to look forward to from AILA Victoria!

AILA is extremely proud to be an Industry Partner of 2017 Melbourne Design Week Thursday March 16 – Sunday March 26. Melbourne Design Week is an annual design program linking creativity with business and community. Check out the whole program here

AILA Victoria supports the Victorian Government’s intention to protect the suburban backyard and looks forward to more details being released on the proposed planning changes. Read more here.

Don’t miss out on this! On behalf of WE-EF LIGHTING, AILA Victoria invites you to a truly magical experience - An Idea is like magic – WE-EF Black Book Launch @ Transit Rooftop Bar on Thursday March 30 from 6pm. Join the creative minds of the Melbourne landscape architecture and lighting design communities to celebrate the arrival of this magical book. We invite you to bring colleagues from your practice. Please RSVP ASAP to or 0401 811 976 with the names of who will be attending. Check out the invitation here

The 2017 Victoria Landscape Architecture Awards have opened! The 2017 Awards opened on Wednesday 15 March and close on Monday 1 May. There are some exciting new categories including Play Spaces, Community Contribution, Small Projects and Landscape Planning. The AILA Victoria Future Leaders Award has also been reintroduced to the program. Click here for all info and how to enter.

The last executive message celebrated the successful Premier event AILA Victoria presents Thomas Woltz in Feb . Megan Backhouse from The Age has written a fantastic piece about his presentation and work at Thank you again to Fleming's and RMIT for making this event possible.

On Wed March 8 the first Celebrity Lawn Series supported by Lawn Solutions was held at MPavilion Docklands. Over 20 attendees learnt about the journey of the 2015 MPavilion from Queen Victoria Gardens to the Docklands. Presentations by Campbell Morris, MALA Studios , Adrian Lee ,Places Victoria and Steve Cole, Lawn Solutions gave insight into the design, development and challenges of the site from these three fascinating perspectives.

Melbourne Water is developing a new urban cooling program to help manage the heat and climate challenges facing the Melbourne region. As part of stakeholder engagement they help a number of focus group workshops in mid-March. AILA members were in attendance and discussed living (green) infrastructure and water sensitive urban design programs and projects (current and future) that seek to improve the liveability, water management and resilience of the city.

Felicity McGahan - AILA Victoria Chapter Manager


News from Victoria Chapter 6 March 2017


Wow...March already! We can hardly believe it.

A big hello from the AILA Fresh committee!
AILA Fresh is the committee for LA students and recent graduates. We provide opportunities for students and grads to develop and support them through their studies and in the transition from university into the profession. Our aim is to create a community within which this group can meet their peers, network with more experienced professionals, build their knowledge and skills, and be exposed to current issues relating to landscape architecture. We hope that this gives the newest members in our profession a good starting base within which they feel that they are supported and that they have somewhere to turn when they need help or have questions.

AILA Fresh is run by students and grads, for students and grads. In exciting news we have expanded our committee, which now includes: Myself - Ella Gauci-Seddon, Neha Juddo, Heather Stevenson, Shelley Black, Martin Woodbine, Thomas Black, Castiel Shepp, Griet Vanhaverbeke, Nathan Collins (previous AILA Fresh chair)

With this new committee we have lots of exciting new ideas and projects, some of which are already underway!

Last Friday we hosted the first of our new event series - Fresh Fridays! Fresh Fridays are casual after work drinks that will be held of the first Friday of every month. They will create a space for meeting new people, exchanging ideas and informal learning. The events will alternate between being held at a pub or bar, and being held at landscape architecture studios around Melbourne. This will give students and grads the opportunity to see a variety of offices and to have a chat with people in those offices in a relaxed environment. The first Fresh Friday, which was held at Loop Bar, was a great success with lots of new faces. Around 40 people came throughout the evening. It was particularly excellent to see so many new connections being made and old friends getting a chance to catch up and talk shop! We hope to see you all at Fresh Fridays over the coming months. If you would like to hold a Fresh Friday at your office we would love to hear from you.

Over the next little while keep your eye out for our logo design competition, mentorship program, more Fresh Fridays and other exciting events!

To stay connected with AILA Fresh you can:
Like us on Facebook -
Follow us on Instagram - @vfresh_aila
Email us -

Women's Planning Network - 2017 International Women's Day Breakfast
The PIA International Women’s Day breakfast was held on Thursday March 2 at Parliament House. It was a fantastic event that showcased some amazing women within planning, landscape architecture and architecture. Dr Helen Holst of Launch Housing spoke about the challenges around homelessness, urging everyone in the built environment profession to do their bit to end homelessness. Helen’s speech was a powerful reminder that homelessness is an issue for all of us, and that our professions puts us in a position to make real change. The strength of all the amazing women (and men!) in the room was palpable! Congratulation Jessica Noonan - the winner of the 2017 Female Achiever of the Year (FAY) Award.

AILA Victoria Presented Thomas Woltz
On Tuesday 28 February, New York landscape architect ,Thomas Woltz presented to a 100-strong crowd at RMIT’s Storey Hall. Thank you to Fleming’s Nurseries and RMIT for being fantastic partners in this Premier event. Media interest was attracted by The Age and Foreground and this coverage will be shared very soon. Thomas’s presentation of his projects was incredibly inspiring and we were very proud to host him here in Melbourne.

Upcoming – Wednesday 8 March – Celebrity Lawn Series, MPavilion Docklands
Register now for this exciting event.
Come along and hear about the relocation of the 2015 MPavilion from Queen Victoria Gardens to the Docklands. Presenters feature Campbell Morris from MALA landscape architecture, Adrian Lee from Places Victoria and Steve Cole from Lawn Solutions. Each giving their perspective as landscape architect, client and turf supplier on this recent transformation of MPavilion Docklands.

Ella Gauci – Seddon – Victoria AILA Fresh Chair



News from Victoria Chapter - 20 February 2017


This year the call-to-action has been continuing to improve the resilience of our urban environments, so our cities can withstand and adapt better to the shocks and stresses that come with rapid urbanisation, population growth and a changing climate.

The Australian Built Environment Council (ASBEC) Resilience Task Group, where I am representing AILA, is currently planning its resilience priorities for 2017 post-release of the Resilience Fact Sheets. I have also joined forces with a number of AILA members in the development of a draft AILA Position Statement - ‘Adapting to a Changing Climate: Building Resilience’ which will be released shortly for member comment.

On the 8 February I attended the 'Creating liveable and resilient cities by working with nature' panel-session where a number of Chief Resilience Officers from the 100 Resilient Cities program discussed the key role of urban biodiversity in strengthening the resilience of cities globally. If you want to learn more about how to make our cities 'climate ready' take a look at the Australian Government's Climate Ready Cities policy information brief prepared by the National Climate Change Adaptation Research Facility (NCCARF). Resilience and adaptation strategies (such as WSUD and the use of green infrastructure) are something that Landscape architects play a key role in and it is important that we show leadership in this space.

The next few weeks are great for professional development. Tickets are selling fast for Thomas Woltz on Tuesday 28 February at RMIT Storey Hall. Take a look at this article sent through from his New York office to give you a preview. Click here to read. Register here now before it’s too late!

AILA has secured a table at the sold out PIA 2017 International Women's Day Breakfast on Thursday 2 March. If you would like a seat on the table there a couple of seats left. Tickets are $70 including GST. Please contact AILA VIC or 0401 811 976 if you would like to join us!

WE-EF are inviting creative minds of the Melbourne landscape architecture and lighting design communities to celebrate the arrival of the WE-EF LIGHTING Black Book. The Black Book translates WE-EF’s product ideas into visual language and is WE-EF Australia/New Zealand's latest and arguably most unexpected publication. If you would like to join the WE-EF Black Book Launch on Thursday 30 March 2017, please get in touch with AILA VIC at by 6 March 2017.

Also as part of the AILA CPD events there is the
Celebrity Lawn Series: Docklands Park on Wednesday 6 pm March 8 which will include a site visit, educational talk and refreshments at the trailblazing turf project - Docklands Park. Register here!

Pru Smith - AILA Victoria Secretary



News from Victoria Chapter - 6 February 2017



The Environment Committee of AILA Victoria is an engaged and interesting group of landscape architects, keen to contribute, from a landscape architecture perspective, to environmental issues affecting Victoria, and more broadly, Australia. We do so by preparing submissions and organising events. The committee meets on the second Wednesday morning of each month, at 8 am, at the Treasury Café, near Parliament Station in Melbourne. New members are always welcome. The breakfasts at Treasury Café are worth the early start to the day.

When drafting submissions, the committee draws on the policies of AILA and the expertise of its members. Such submissions might be in response to discussion papers and draft policies, strategies, regulations, and guidelines proposed by federal, state, municipal or statutory authorities and other organisations with a broad landscape remit. We aim to draw attention to the special role that landscape architects can have in protecting the environmental values of urban, suburban and rural landscapes. In 2016, the committee was quite busy. You can see our submissions here.

In October 2016 two members of the committee helped organise the Living Cities Event. This event was a great success, attended by over 60 people. Facilitated by Prof Rob Adams, a panel comprising Peter Seamer (CEO Victorian Planning Authority), Jill Garner (Victorian Government Architect), Sally Capp (Victorian Executive Director of the Property Council), Wes Fleming (director, Fleming’s Nurseries), Adrian Gray (manager of urban design at Brimbank Council), Tim O’Loan (Practice Lead - Design and Planning at AECOM), and Emma Appleton (AILA Victorian President), discussed green infrastructure and its implementation.

If you would like to join us, please email me at


Women at the helm of built environment professions

The Victorian Executive Officers & Presidents of the Australian Institute of Landscape Architects, Planning Institute and Australian Institute of Architects met up to discuss our continuing combined activities that we will work together on in 2017. We took this opportunity to recognise the fact that women hold all of these positions. The February issue of Planning News has included a feature article with more information

AILA Victoria presents Thomas Woltz - Tuesday 28 February 

AILA Victoria is very excited to present Thomas Woltz, the well-known landscape architects from New York to deliver a lecture at Storey Hall on Tuesday February 28.

He will present on a number of significant public realm projects with which he has been involved in the United States and elsewhere – a great opportunity for Australian landscape architects to benchmark our own work against that of our international peers. Tickets are selling fast so register now!

Celebrity Lawn Series – Wednesday 8 March

Celebrity Lawn Series is a new CPD series which includes a site visit, educational talk and refreshments at a trailblazing turf project. This is an excellent opportunity to gain CPD points while checking out Docklands Park recent transformation designed by Melbourne landscape architecture firm MALA. Tickets can be purchased here.

Meredith Dobbie – AILA Victoria Environment committee chair




News from Victoria Chapter – 23 January 2017



A warm welcome back to everyone from AILA Victoria! We hope that you had a fun and relaxing time with family and friends.

We are off to a flying start already with the first piece of advocacy work submitted in January.

This was a response to the Draft Integrated Water Management Framework and was prepared by the AILA Victoria Environment Committee. You can view here

In December 2016, AILA Victoria also provided a response to the Safe and Accessible Victorian Waterways Discussion Paper prepared by the Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources. This can be viewed here.

Contribute to AILA’s Advocacy work – Have your say


In May 2016, AILA Victoria reviewed the Draft Native Vegetation Clearing Regulations and submitted a response outlining key issues and making recommendations to the Department of Environment, Water, Land and Planning. See the letter here. Since then, all submissions have been considered and DELWP now invites comments on the proposed amendments by 8 March 2016.  Please contact if you would like to contribute to this piece of work.


Thomas Woltz lecture in Melbourne!


At the end of February 2017 AILA Victoria will be hosting New York based landscape architect Thomas Woltz, whose work is well known many of you. Thomas will deliver a lecture (dates to be confirmed soon) presenting a number of significant public realm projects with which he has been involved in the United States and elsewhere – a great opportunity for us as Australian landscape architects to benchmark our own work against that of our international peers. Read more about Thomas and his practice.  

Other events to look out for
Trust for Nature and Bush Heritage Australia annual Celebrating Women in Conservation Breakfast takes place on Thursday 2nd March. See here for ticketing information. 

Mary Papaioannou

AILA Victoria Vice-President



News from AILA Victoria Chapter - 19 December 2016


The Regional Committee aims to facilitate educational and professional support for regional Landscape Architects across Victoria while nurturing a strong and recognisable presence for the profession by leading AILA in providing stewardship for the natural landscape and enhancing the livability of regional and rural settlements in Victoria.

During the year an AILA National Council meeting was held in Geelong 17 March 2016 at the Deakin University waterfront campus. Following the meeting regional members joined the National Council for a drink and discussion.

In July Felix Hemingway participated in an AILA assessment of the Deakin University Masters of Landscape Architecture course. Deakin is the only university committed by its constitution to keep a strong regional context. Ongoing work has been committed by Regional AILA members and of course Melbourne based members.

In 2017 two larger events are being planned by the regional group. The main event is a seminar in Wodonga looking at Landscape Architecture in the regions. There are all sorts of interesting components to this seminar and it will be very participative. Keep an eye out for it. This event is understandably gaining interest from New South Wales and Canberra Landscape Architects.

The other event in planning involves “hands on” sessions in Dry Stone Walling with internationally qualified Dry Stone Wallers. This will be a chance to get dirty, learn new skills and gain insight into this ancient craft. 


AILA Victoria Christmas Party


Last Monday evening (12th December) was AILA Victoria’s Christmas Party at Pilgrim Bar, along the Yarra River and near Federation Square. What a fantastic evening it was! It was so great to see so many of you there to celebrate AILA Victoria’s achievements for 2016 and a great opportunity for us to thank you for all your efforts and contributions throughout the year. We hope you all had a brilliant evening and enjoyed a drink or two along the river! We would also love to thank Hardie Deck for being a proud partner of the Christmas party.





AILA Victoria provided a submission in response to the Safe and Accessible Victorian Waterways Discussion Paper prepared by the Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources. This was prepared by members of the AILA Vic Environment and Public Sector committees and it can be viewed here.


AILA Victoria Christmas Shutdown Period


AILA Victoria wishes you and your families a very Merry Christmas and New Year! AILA Victoria will be closed from Thursday 22nd December and reopening on Monday 9th January. Thank you to our loyal partners Fleming's Nursery, WE-EF Lighting and City of Melbourne for their support throughout 2016. We would also love to thank our Victorian executive who have guided and supported the chapter office throughout the year.


Felix Hemingway
AILA Victoria Regional Committee chair




News from AILA Victoria Chapter - 5 December 2016


Happy festive season to all our members and sponsors. I hope the run up to Christmas is not too hectic and all look forward to the end of a busy year.

AILA Vic chapter has been working hard on 2016 AILA Victoria Membership renewals.
I am very pleased to say that the number of people who have not renewed is quite minimal.
In 2016/2017 the AILA Victoria retention rate is extremely high for a membership based organisation– over 95% which is brilliant. If however, you are one of the very few left yet to renew, please get in touch with the Chapter office or National office as soon as possible, to avoid suspension of your membership.

Advocacy activities continue to expand and our influence widens. 

The City of Melbourne has invited AILA to nominate a representative for their external reference group on the Hoddle Grid Heritage Review.
Several members and our Chapter office manager recently attended an Arden Vision workshop conducted by the Victorian Planning Authority, with invitees from PIA, AIA and other government agencies and departments. It was encouraging to hear speakers such as Jill Garner, Victorian Government Architect, espousing the virtues of green infrastructure and along with the AILA members present, call for a more integrated response to the challenges and opportunities of how water is dealt with in this urban renewal precinct.

There are currently two documents out for comment that may be of interest to members.
draft Integrated Water Management Framework. Feedback can be provided to by 13 January 2017. 
Safe and Accessible Victorian Waterways discussion paper - feedback being sought until 14 December 2016.



Please get in touch with the Chapter office if you wish to contribute to an AILA response to these papers. Our Public Sector, Advocacy and Environment Committees would be interested in your contribution.

Finally, the executive look forward to seeing many of you at the AILA Christmas Party on Monday 12 December at Pilgrim Bar. RSVP to Felicity at the Chapter office if you have not yet done so. 

Dean Thornton



Advocacy Committee


The AILA Victoria Advocacy Committee aims to promote and support Landscape Architecture practice. We undertake state-based advocacy work to assist, inform and influence government agencies and allied professions to ensure that Landscape Architects play a principal role in the design, planning and management of the natural and built environment. The committee has coordinated and prepared a number of member led submissions on various topical projects over the past year, including Fishermans Bend, Plan Melbourne Refresh, Nightingale Apartments and the Better Apartments Discussion Paper. You can find some of our recent submissions on the Victoria Advocacy page - insert link on the AILA website.

A focus of the committee for the year ahead will be the '50 Future Spaces for Victoria' project. The committee also plans to focus on how we can continue to engage and interest AILA members in advocacy issues and how we might better utilise the resources and knowledge base of the broader AILA membership.

If you would like to be involved in our conversations, we are currently looking for more members to join the committee. Please email Brenton Beggs or Gemma Ashley if you are interested. We generally meet together once a month in the CBD and welcome any new members keen to assist and contribute.

Living Cities

Last week AILA VIC hosted the sequel event to Canberra’s Living Cities Workshop at the new AECOM facilities. The event attracted a massive turnout from our most esteemed professionals in the built environment. Speakers and guest panellists included Peter Seamer, CEO Victorian Planning Authority; Jill Garner, Victorian Government Architect; Sally Capp, Victorian Executive Director, Property Council; Wes Fleming, Director, Fleming’s Nurseries; Adrian Gray, Manger Urban Design Brimbank Council; Tim O’Loan, Practice Lead - Design and Planning, AECOM; and Emma Appleton AILA Victorian President. The panel was expertly facilitated by Prof Rob Adams, Director City Design and Projects at the City of Melbourne who led a robust discussion on green infrastructure and its implementation.

The take home message for the night was that green infrastructure is critical to the liveability of our cities, and pathways need to be sought to ensure its funding and implementation. Increasing tree canopies, water sensitive urban design approaches, and utilising public space efficiently leads to higher quality and more adaptive urban environments. Climate change presents risks but also opportunities to prioritise and encourage the adoption of green infrastructure as an asset to our community, economy and built environment. Thanks to our sponsors Lawn Solutions Australia and the support received from AECOM and Fleming’s Nurseries the night was one to be repeated.


AILA Fresh Studio Tours

The highly anticipated AILA Fresh Studio’s tour was held last week. It brought together over 20 students with professionals from a wide range of landscape architecture studios including McGregor Coxall, Aspect, Enlocus, Urban Initiatives, Oculus and Hansen Partnership. 

Each studio presented key projects which demonstrated aspects of approach, representation, problem solving faced at key moments in the design process. The sessions allowed students the opportunity to ask questions and discuss the challenges and motivations which drive each professional to push the limits to make good work happen. Thanks to all studios involved for providing students with valuable advice and insight into professional practice.


WE-EF Sustainable Lighting Seminar

Join WE-EF for this exciting event on Thursday 1 December, 5pm at WE-EF Offices, 6/13 Downard Street, Braeside, Victoria. Inspired by the AILA National Festival 2016 Not In My Backyard, WE-EF would like to invite Victorian landscape architects to learn about environmental aspects of lighting.
There will be a series of short talks, which includes how lighting works and what you should know about lighting for public spaces. Other topics will be dark skies and how lighting impacts the environment; and then taking a brief look at Life Cycle Assessment and how lighting manufacturers like WE-EF can contribute to improved sustainability of lighting installations. You can register to attend here.


AILA Victoria Christmas Party
The AILA Victoria Christmas Party is a great opportunity for members to come together to celebrate the achievements of AILA Victoria in 2016 as well as reflecting on the past 50 years of AILA. It will be held on Monday 12th December at Pilgrim Bar at 6pm with canapes. This event is free to members, however you do need to register in advance to secure your place at the party.

- Gemma Ashley, Advocacy Committee Co-Chair



News from AILA Victoria Chapter - 8 November 2016


Living Cities AILA Victoria

All spaces have been filled to attend the AILA Victoria 'Living Cities' event this Thursday, where we will hear from key decision and policy makers and influences about the role of green infrastructure in the growth of Melbourne and Victoria. With Infrastructure Victoria including it as a key aspect of their 30 year plan, we are seeking commitments as well as further understanding of the barriers we may need to overcome to truly deliver the green infrastructure required for a liveable city.

AILA Festival

What a festival it was in Canberra! Victorian landscape architects from private practice, public agency and the academy joined the 600-big crowd to consider the anthropocene, described by creative director, Richard Weller as 'profoundly frightening, deeply uncertain and incredibly optimistic'.

An amazing four days + of events, exhibitions, and inspiration pulled together by the AILA national and chapter offices from across the country.

We heard an urgent call for us to not only continue to make a difference in terms of protecting and improving natural and living systems in each and every project, (and in our daily lives), but also to increase our agency, voice and skills to rally others to consider the urgent needs of the earth and its people. The importance of collaborations with scientists, embracing technologies which inform our design processes, and engaging in projects of scale were key messages. 'Stay with the trouble!'

Victoria also scooped a number of AILA National Awards as part of the new awards program. Congratulations to all who were shortlisted and those who won! See the list of who won here.

Membership renewals

Your AILA Membership renewal is now overdue. Please contact Flick or Kate urgently at the Vic chapter on 0401 811 976 or if you are having trouble renewing and we will assist!

Emma Appleton - AILA Victoria President 



News from AILA Victoria Chapter - 26 October 2016


This newsletter is the first in a series featuring AILA Victoria Chapter Committees and acknowledging their commitment and valued work.

Cultivate Committee

Cultivate aims to engage AILA with emerging landscape theory and design topics by providing forums for conversation and collaboration. In the year ahead, Cultivate hopes to build upon the ambitious work of AILA Victoria’s recent Connection to Country symposium, interrogate the urban design implications of Melbourne’s housing affordability crisis, identify avenues for collaboration with the city’s local universities and explore intersections of landscape and film. If you are interested in joining our conversations or would like to be notified of our upcoming meetings and events, please contact co-chairs Jen Lynch and Emily Wong through the Vic Chapter at

Modeling Practice: Emerging Landscape Practice in Melbourne

On Thursday 13 October, AILA launched its Night Networking series at LOOP Bar. Hosted by the AILA Cultivate Committee and supported by the City of Melbourne, ‘Modeling Practice’ framed an inspiring discussion between four of Melbourne’s emerging landscape practices: Bush Projects (Bonnie Grant and Sarah Hicks), Pollen Studio (Dan Nunan), MALA Studio (Cam Morris with Joe Morgan-Paylor) and AKAS Landscape Architecture (Anthony Sharples and Alistair Kirkpatrick). Each practice presented itself in the form of a manifesto, outlining the key theories, questions, techniques, mentors, precedents and principles that inspire their work. Presentations and a panel discussion following surfaced the diversity of the practices as well as a series of common themes, including the importance of collaboration, risk-taking and boundary-pushing. What a brilliant turn out with 50 – 70 people attending!

An excellent, strong start to Night Networking.

AILA Victoria presents ‘Living Cities’

Join us on Thursday, 10 November, 6:30pm – 8:30pm at AECOM to discuss the role of green infrastructure (or ‘living infrastructure’) in the sustainable growth of Victoria. This exciting event will feature leaders from government and the development and design industries who will present their approaches to delivering ‘Living Cities’.

Speakers include: Peter Seamer, CEO, Victorian Planning Authority; Sally Capp, CEO of the Property Council; Paul Younis, CEO Brimbank City Council; and Jill Garner, Victorian Government Architect. The speakers will discuss the planning, design and financing of green infrastructure, the challenges involved in its delivery, and change required to make green infrastructure support sustainable growth.

This event follows on from AILA National’s discussions with industry and professional bodies as outlined in the Living Cities Workshop Report a response to the Federal Government’s initiatives.

Working with Water, the Good, the Bad and the Stormy

Last Thursday night, AILA held a Landscape Technical CPD session entitled ‘Working with Water, the Good, the Bad and the Stormy’. Landscape Technical CPD sessions provide a forum for the presentation and exhibition of industry information in an educational and inspiring format. The event included presentations by three speakers, including: Gary Bukowski (ACO), who presented on surface drainage management; Martin Reeves (OUTLINES), who presented the award winning Gum Scrub Creek project, a large new built ecology in Melbourne’s south-east growth corridor; and Michael Koungras (Austral), who spoke to us on permeable paving systems. This event was brought to AILA Victoria by ACO and Austral.

National Urban Design Awards 2016

AILA is a supporting peak body of the National Urban Design Awards. The Planning Institute of Australia (PIA) organized a great event held on Thursday, 13 October at 452 Flinders Street, Melbourne. The standard of Urban Design project entries from across Australia was excellent. Dean and Felicity attended the cocktail party and presentation and it was a good opportunity to mix with around 100 other design professionals.

Have a look at the gallery of winners here.


Jennifer Lynch

News from AILA Victoria Chapter - 11 October 2016

This October there are a number of opportunities to brush-up on professional development.

The AILA Cultivate Committee hosting ‘Modeling Practice’ at LOOP Bar at 6pm, Thursday 13 October.

Four Melbourne-based design practices will discuss the ongoing conversation in their practice between precedent and experiment, repetition and mutation, ideas and application.
This event is the launch of AILA Victoria’s Night Networks Series which will happen every two months.

There is also theWorking with Water, the Good, the Bad and the Stormy‘ Landscape Technical CPD session at 6pm on Thursday 20 October at Brickworks Studio in Richmond. The event will feature a presentation by Martin Reeves of Outlines on the AILA award winning Gum Scrub Creek project which is a large new built ecology constructed at Officer. The evening will also include other presenters from providing technical information on various surface drainage and permeable paving systems.

Victoria's 30-Year Infrastructure Strategy


Infrastructure Victoria has released its draft 30-year Infrastructure Strategy, with the final strategy due to parliament by end 2016. We are pleased to note that green infrastructure features prominently in the draft Strategy. This is directly in line with AILA Victoria’s June submission (in response to their earlier options paper) where we advocated for the recognition and prioritisation of green infrastructure and called for a state-wide Green Infrastructure Plan. It is therefore very pleasing to see that that the draft Strategy has referenced many of the discussion points made in our submission, and that there is a recommendation to ‘increase the amount and quality of green infrastructure in urban settings’ and to ‘ to produce a green infrastructure plan in partnership with local government‘. This is a great outcome and emphasizes the importance of our advocacy efforts in ensuring landscape architects have a voice in the issues that impact our cities and places.

We encourage members to review the draft Strategy and complete the survey. Also if you wish to get involved in preparing a submission for AILA please contact Felicity at


Living Cities

While on the topic of green infrastructure, AILA Victoria are currently planning a Living Cities event in November. This follows on from the National Living Cities forum which took place in Canberra in February.
AILA led discussions with industry and professional bodies associated with green infrastructure planning and has been instrumental in the development of the Living Cities Workshop Report, a response to the Federal Government’s initiatives. You can read the Living Cities Workshop Report hereFollowing on from this, we are now planning to host an event in Melbourne to continue the conversation locally.

Fishermans Bend Recast Vision

The Fishermans Bend Ministerial Advisory Committee has now released the final recast vision for Fishermans Bend, including the 10 Strategic Directions and the vision for each precinct to 2050. AILA is encouraged by its commitments to sustainability and liveability although more detail is needed to fully understand how these will be implemented.

Pru Smith



News from the AILA Victoria Chapter - 28 September 2016

AILA Victoria congratulate AILA’s new National Board, and look forward to working with them to further progress the organisation and landscape architecture in general.

Annual General Meeting (AGM)
The AGM was held on September 15 at Places Victoria. Annual reports from the President, Treasurer and all Committees were presented, outlining achievements to date and forward plans. See here for overview – this is also summarised in AILA’s Annual report along with all the other states. We also welcomed 20 new registered landscape architects, including four Senior Entry applicants. Congratulations!
Thanks to Pru Smith, AILA Victoria Secretary, Committee Chairs and Georgie Greenland, Kate Western and Felicity McGahan for organising the event.

Melbourne Metro Rail Inquiry / Advisory Committee (IAC)
On September 19, Jon Shinkfield, previous Past President of AILA Victoria, represented AILA at the Melbourne Metro IAC, an independent panel appointed by the Minister to review and consider the environmental effects of the project. Jon advocated for landscape architects to be integral to the design teams for Melbourne Metro, from the earliest stage of the project, so as to achieve the best contextual outcomes (and not just fix up the impacts of functional engineering solutions). He emphasised the need for trees to be in ground, not containerized, to enable optimum growth and to achieve positive impacts for the city. Jon also reinforced the need to have on-going expert peer review through the OVGA’s Victorian Design Review Panel to ensure the high ambitions of the project are delivered. Thanks Jon, for representing AILA and to David Dreadon, Meredith Dobbie and Pru Smith for working with Jon to prepare the submission.

Better Apartment submission
On September 19, AILA Victoria submitted their response to the draft Apartment Design Standards. You can read that here.Thank you to Mark Skiba for drafting the submission, with input from Emma Appleton, David Dreadon, Craig Czarny, Dean Thornton, Claire Martin, Ron Jones, Mark Jacques, Mary Papaioannou, Brenton Beggs and Gemma Ashley. AILA’s previous submission was obviously responded to in the drafting of the Standards, but AILA still advocates for the standards to go further if Melbourne wants to retain its liveable city status.

AILA Victoria’s Night Network launch
On Thursday October 13, the Night Network series will be launched, with ‘Modeling Practice’, run by the Cultivate Committee. This will be at LOOP Bar, Meyers Place from 6pm. Every second month on the second Thursday of the month, an AILA Victoria event will take place at a venue in the CBD, either as a formal conversation with key speakers, or an informal gathering. Come along to the launch and hear from four emerging practices.

My Park Rules
On 13 September, Oculus visited Baden Powell College to present the final design panels from the My Park Rules Competition.
AILA Victoria is looking forward to working with Baden Powell College and Oculus on making the most of all of the work that went in to this competition entry.
More to come on this………

Emma Appleton


News from AILA Victoria Chapter - 13 September 2016

This week is an important week in the Victorian Chapter Calendar with the Annual General Meeting 2016 being held on Thursday starting at 5.30pm at Places Victoria, 710 Collins Street. As always, all members are welcome to attend the meeting where the Annual Report will be presented by the Executive Committee together with the Chairs of all other Victorian Chapter Committees. Certificates will also be presented to those members who were successful in the most recent round of Registration Applications.

The Victorian Government is seeking feedback on the Climate Change Adaption Plan Directions Paper [IP2] which will set out climate change adaptation action across the state for the next four years, from 2017. This second adaption plan builds on the first, which is currently in effect, and on the vast amount of adaptation action already taking place throughout the State. This includes action by coastal communities to develop regional plans, and by local governments to develop urban forest strategies and climate-proof local infrastructure. Consultation ends on the 23 September 2016. Please contact AILA Vic if you want to get involved in the preparation of a submission. 

We are pleased to advise that The Greening the West sub-committee dealing with powerline guidelines has invited AILA to attend an important meeting with Jemena, Powercor and Energy Safe Victoria to discuss the impact of increasingly onerous guidelines on the delivery of effective street tree plantings. We will keep membership updated on progress. In other news, we encourage landscape architects seeking Government consultancy work that they investigate if they need to be listed on the Construction Supplier Register which is a pre-qualification scheme for building and construction industry consultants and contractors. We understand it is used by State Government and by arrangement by some local Governments, hospitals and other approved Government and non-Government organisations. 

We also remind all members that Jon Shinkflield will make a presentation on behalf of AILA Victoria at the Melbourne Metro Rail Public Hearing on Monday 19th September at Mercure Treasury Gardens, Ground Floor, 13 Spring Street, Melbourne at 10am. As this is a public hearing, interested members are welcome to attend.

Mary Papaioannou

AILA Victoria Vice President



News from AILA Victoria Chapter - 29 August 2016


The Victorian Chapter Annual General Meeting (AGM) is to be held on Thursday 15 September from 5.30 to 6.30pm at Places Victoria, 710 Collins Street, Docklands.  All members are invited to attend the AGM but must RSVP by Wednesday 14th September to Kate Western in the chapter office or via our event page hereThe Executive will be presenting a summary of the 2015-2016 year as well as presenting new Registered Landscape Architects with their Certificates.

AILA’s 50th Birthday celebration was held simultaneously around the country last Thursday night. A feature of the night was the screening of the AILA film, which you can see here. Also an impromptu and moving speech from AILA Fellow Jim Sinatra was widely appreciated. Thanks to our sponsors Lappset and Austral Bricks for their contribution to the evening. 

Last week also featured a highly successful and sold out joint event with AILA, PIA and AIA, titled Getting Around Town; Melbourne’s Transport Future. Presenters included AILA member Tim O’Loan from Aecom; Timothy Papandreou, Director of the Office of Innovation at San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA); and Robert Moore, Project Executive, Melbourne Metro Rail. 

This Thursday afternoon September 1st , we have the WE-EF Lighting Tour in Mornington; which is another sold out event. A bus will be travelling from the NGV in the CBD to Mornington and from there a tour will take place around Mornington, through the laneways towards the Mornington harbour precinct and finish with dinner. Sure to be a great evening.

Finally, the work of our Connection to Country Victorian Committee continues with a national draft Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) and a draft Connection to Country Position Statement about to be sent to AILA National for consideration. Big thanks to the Committee, Anne-Marie Pisani and Mary Papaioannou for their tremendous efforts with this work.

Dean Thornton - AILA Victoria Treasurer 




News from AILA Victoria Chapter - 16 August 2016


Following the success of the recent AILA Victoria Awards, (link to winners here and photos of the night here in case you missed this), we are pleased to report that the efforts of the Vic Chapter Office and Executive to broaden our audience continue to be richly rewarded! You will find links to a variety of media coverage of the winning projects below.

Architecture Australia Australian Design Review Architecture & Design

Outdoor Design Source

The Border Mail

Latrobe Valley Express

Bendigo Advertiser


You can also listen to Emma Appleton, AILA Victoria Chapter President and Jury Chair, speaking on ABC Goulburn Murray radio the morning after the Awards. Emma, was interviewed alongside the Mayor of Wodonga about Junction Place, Winner of the Civic Landscape Award of Excellence, by ASPECT Studios and City of Wodonga.


The Chapter’s advocacy work continues, and contributions from members are welcomed.

Protecting the Yarra


Led by the Environment Committee, AILA Vic made a submission on the “Protecting the Yarra (Birrarung) Discussion Paper”. It was a great opportunity to draw on some of the thinking and discussion generated by the “Yarra Riverkeeper” event run earlier this year. Find a link to the submission here.

50 Year Water Strategy


On August 23rd, Meredith Dobbie, Environment Committee Chair, will represent AILA at the 50-year Urban Water Strategy Stakeholder Workshop to be held by Yarra Valley Water.

Melbourne Metro


On September 19th, Jon Shinkfield will represent AILA at the Melbourne Metro Rail Project – EES Inquiry and Advisory Committee Panel Hearing.

Draft Better Apartments Standards


The Better Apartments project is a joint initiative of the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) and the Office of the Victorian Government Architect (OVGA). In 2015, AILA VIC made a submission on the Better Apartments Discussion Paper (Find a link to that submission here). The Victorian Government has now released the Better Apartment Draft Design Standards and is inviting community and stakeholder feedback to inform design guidelines that will be introduced later this year. AILA Vic is seeking interested members to work on the preparation of a submission on the Draft Standards. If you think you can help, please contact Felicity McGahan at the Chapter Office to get involved. Or visit read the draft design standards and have your say. Public consultation on the draft design standards is open until 5pm,19 September 2016.


Mary Papaioannou - Vice President 




News from AILA Victoria Chapter - 2 August 2016

On the evening of Thursday 28 July, AILA Victoria had their 2016 AILA Victoria Landscape Architecture Awards ceremony. This year AILA Victoria had 33 entries and 13 Awards were received across eight different categories. This year’s Awards were given to the following categories Urban Design, Civic Landscape, Parks and Open Spaces, Tourism, Research, Policy and Communications, Infrastructure and Communities.

The Awards ceremony was an outstanding success for the chapter with over 200 members and non-members attending. A huge thank you to the MC for the evening, Professor Gini Lee, the Awards Committee Chair, Dan Nunan, the AILA Victoria Awards Committee, AILA Victoria President and Jury Chair, Emma Appleton, the Jury Committee, Ron Jones, Felix Hemingway, Adam Nitschke, Tony Styant-Browne, Susan Small, the Florist, Lilac and the Cat, the photographer, Drew Echberg and last but not least, the venue, Melbourne School of Design, University of Melbourne.

Our Awards exhibition has also been a success with many students and members of the public visiting on a daily basis. The exhibition opened on Monday 25th July at 9am and has closed today, the exhibition had all 33 entries displayed around the Dulux Gallery at the Melbourne School of Design which was a fantastic opportunity for the public to get familiar with Landscape Architecture and the entrants projects.

Over the next few weeks we will post all the photos that were taken from the Awards ceremony evening by Drew Echberg so keep your eyes peeled on our social media networks. Like us here on Facebook and send us a tweet on Twitter. If you love the photographs from the Awards ceremony, please feel free to get in contact with Drew Echberg here.

Below is a list of all the media coverage the 2016 AILA Victoria Landscape Architecture Awards ceremony received. Feel free to comment, like and/or share any of this coverage with your colleagues and friends!

Architecture Australia
Australian Design Review
Architecture Media
The Border Mail
AILA website

Felicity McGahan 
AILA Victoria Chapter Manager


Kate Western

AILA Victoria Admin and Event Assistant





News from AILA Victoria Chapter Executive - 19 July 2016

2016 Stormwater Victoria Excellence Awards

Last Thursday 14 July I attended the Gala dinner for the 2016 Stormwater Victoria Excellence Awards as a guest on behalf of AILA. It was great to see landscape architects in the project teams of many of the award winning projects including GbLA Landscape Architects Pty Ltd, Brimbank Council and Aspect Studios respectively for:

Excellence in Integrated Stormwater Design - Warralily/Armstrong Creek Wetland and Creek System, stages 2A and 2F

Excellence in Strategic or Master Planning - Stony Creek Upper Transformation Project

Excellence in Policy or Education - Green-Blue Ballarat Action Plan.

Seeking a Creative Director for the 2017 Festival of Landscape Architecture

AILA is currently seeking expressions of interest for the role of Creative Director for the Festival of Landscape Architecture. The Festival will be held in Sydney in late 2017 and will include Welcome Reception, National Awards Presentation, AILA AGM, National Council and State Presidents meeting, a student program, public talks, tours and exhibitions. Expression of interest submissions are due 8 August 2016. For more information Download the 2017 Creative Director brief or contact AILA.

Protecting the Yarra River (Birrarung) Discussion Paper

The Yarra River Protection Ministerial Advisory Committee is consulting on the the Protecting the Yarra River (Birrarung) Discussion Paper. The Discussion Paper has been developed to generate discussion and promote debate on about how the Yarra River is managed and protected as part of the Victorian Government’s proposed Yarra River Protection Act and Yarra Trust. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to protect this iconic waterway for future generations, and I strongly urge members to take a look at the Discussion Paper and complete the survey by 5 August 2016. Should you wish to get involved in a submission on behalf of AILA please contact Felicity McGahan, VIC Chapter Manager.

St Georges Road Median M40 Melbourne Water Project

The St Georges Road Median M40 Melbourne Water Project has a proposed reinstatement masterplan which they are now sharing. I understand that Melbourne Water has committed to replacing the same number of trees, saving the palms, and a 4.5m wide path for 60% of the length of the median from Arthurton Road to Miller Street. I encourage members to provide online feedback

AILA Submissions

Also here are the links to recent AILA submissions on the Melbourne Metro Rail Project and the City of Melbourne draft Biodiversity Strategy prepared by the passionate and very hard working VIC Environment Committee.


The 2016 Victoria Landscape Architecture Awards are nearly here, so make sure you have tickets for the ceremony on Thursday evening 28 July. Also make time to get along to the free exhibition at the Dulux Gallery which is being held from Monday 25 July to Friday 5 August. You can also check out the entries at our Facebook page and Twitter @AILAVIC to follow.

VIC Executive Meeting & AGM

The State Executive is meeting this Wednesday evening. If you are interested in coming along please contact Felicity McGahan for details. Also coming up is the Victorian AILA Annual General Meeting, to be held in August, a date is yet to be confirmed. 

Pru Smith 


News from AILA Victoria Chapter Executive - 5 July 2016 

AILA attended a Fishermans Bend Ministerial Advisory Committee Innovation, Evidence and Outcomes Forum on the 21st June in Port Melbourne.


A wide range of professionals participated in the forum and contributed ideas based around 6 important themes:


- Supporting business and innovation
- A place for all people
- Sustainablity and environmental innovation
- Optimising investing opportunities
- Transport
- Creating a destination


The provision of open space and green infrastructure was a common item raised, especially the exploration of opportunities for incorporating it into the streetscape environment to cater for current and future ways of working, recreation and socialising. Thanks to David Dreadon for attending on behalf of AILA.


The Yarra River Protection Ministerial Advisory Committee is seeking feedback and comment on its discussion paper which outlines key issues and proposes a new management model to protect the Yarra River. The discussion paper can be accessed and submissions made at this link:

The Environment Committee is currently finalising two submissions on behalf AILA Victoria. The first is a submission on the Melbourne Metro Rail Project led by David Dreadon; the second a review of the City of Melbourne draft Biodiversity Strategy (July 2016) led by Adrian Marshall. 
It is timely to thank all our volunteer members for their ongoing contributions to advocacy and giving AILA a voice.

Tickets are selling fast for the 2016 Victoria Landscape Architecture Awards. In the lead up to the Awards event on Thursday 28 July, we are showcasing all entries to the Awards. Have a look at the entries released so far at the bottom of the Victoria Awards page and head on over to our Facebook page and Twitter @AILAVIC to follow. We are also happy to welcome Places Victoria as a 2016 Victoria Landscape Architecture Awards partner. We take this opportunity to thank all of our partners of AILA Victoria which can found here.

Dean Thornton - AILA Victoria Treasurer 


News from AILA Victoria Chapter Executive - 20 June 2016

It’s time to celebrate the work of landscape architects by booking a place at the 2016 AILA Victorian awards ceremony and checking out the exhibition! See below for more details on this and other happenings around the state.

AILA Victoria Landscape Architecture Awards

This year we will be presenting a 2016 AILA Victoria Awards ceremony as well as an exhibition of the entries at the Dulux Gallery at the Melbourne School of Design.

The awards jury sat on Friday 10 June and judged the 35 entries received from Victoria and 8 entries from Tasmania. Thank you to the jury for offering their time including Emma Appleton, Felix Hemingway, Ron Jones, Adam Nitschke, Tony Styant-Browne and Susan Small.

The free exhibition will be held from Monday 25 July to Friday 5 August. It will be open Monday to Friday from 9am - 6pm and is open to the public.

The Awards ceremony will take place on Thursday 28 July at 6pm. Please get in quick to book tickets as this is the largest event on the AILA calendar and will sell out quick!

Submission to Infrastructure Victoria

Last week the State Executive sent a response to Infrastructure Victoria on the ‘All Things Considered’ options paper as part of development of their 30-year infrastructure strategy for Victoria due to be released late 2016. Our submission focused on the recognition and prioritisation of Green Infrastructure as an asset class to ensure the health and wellbeing of our communities and ecosystems. More information on the 30-year strategy can be found on the Infrastructure Victoria website.

AILA Vic FRESH Speed Dating

AILA FRESH held their annual Speed Dating event on Thursday 16 June which attracted over 50 participants. The highly successful night allowed the newest members of the profession to connect with a diverse cross-section of the AILA membership. The speed dating format created a fast paced and fun way for everyone to meet all the participating professionals in an informal and social atmosphere. Thank you to Nathan Collins and the FRESH team for putting this great night together and also to the event sponsors Intergrain and Brickworks.

Melbourne MetroRail Project Environmental Effects Statement - get involved!

The Vic Environment Committee are calling out to members to assist in preparing a submission in response to the Melbourne MetroRail Project Environmental Effects Statement which is due 6 July 2016.

Melbourne City Council Urban Ecology and Biodiversity Strategy - get involved!

The City of Melbourne is seeking feedback on their Draft Urban Ecology and Biodiversity strategy until 11 July 2016. The Vic Environment Committee are also currently reviewing and would love to hear from any members who can assist with preparing a response on behalf of AILA.

Pru Smith - AILA Victoria Secretary 


News from AILA Victoria Chapter Executive - 6 June 2016

This edition of the AILA Vic Chapter newsletter takes a moment to celebrate the achievements of our members and recognise their contribution to the practice and promotion of Landscape Architecture.

Australia’s Best Playground

The nation-wide search for Australia’s best playground is over, with the expert jury crowning the City of Melbourne’s Nature Play at Royal Park the country’s overall best public play space. Australia's Best Playground is a national initiative of AILA, sponsored by Lappset Australia.


Congratulations to the City of Melbourne’s design team and their partners on this well deserved recognition. Located adjacent to the Royal Children’s Hospital within the highly valued setting of Royal Park, the Nature Play project encourages exploration and nature based play for children of different ages and abilities. The jury members were impressed with the design’s thoughtful and layered design that aims to express seasonal change and explore “the unique heritage of Royal Park, building knowledge and ensuring that future generations become active stewards of the natural environment.”

Read AILA’s press releases on Australia’s Best Playground Award or listen to City of Melbourne’s Skye Haladane being interviewed about the project on ABC Radio National. 

My Park Rules

My Park Rules, developed by AILA and the 202020 Vision, has announced Marrickville Public School and its surrounding community will be the beneficiaries of a $100,000 new park.

Well done to the Marrickville community!

Congratulations and thanks also to the Victorian finalist Baden Powell College. OCULUS worked with this school on their vision which is here.

See more about the Built Form Review at: and then go to AILA’s submission here.

Central City Built Form Review

AILA strongly believes that the Central City would generally benefit more from consolidating contributions toward strategically located open spaces, rather than piecemeal fragments created on many individual allotments.

In our last newsletter we advised that the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning has undertaken the Central City Built Form Review in partnership with the City of Melbourne officers, and with input from the Office of the Victorian Government Architect. Since then, Mark Skiba has led a working group to make a strong submission on behalf of AILA on the proposed amendments to controls over publicly accessible open space, social housing, competitive design process, sunlight protection to open space, wind controls, setbacks and special character areas.

See more about the Built Form Review at: and then go to AILA’s submission at insert link

We thank our members for the generous contribution of their time and expertise in support of AILA’s advocacy work and the promotion of the Landscape Architecture profession.

Melbourne Metro

We are seeking an AILA member (or members) to lead the preparation of a submission on the Melbourne Metro Project or to join a project working group. If this is you, get in touch with Felicity McGahan at 


Get more information about the Melbourne Metro Project by attending one of a series of community information sessions being held from 1 June - 28 June or at

Mary Papaioannou - Vice President



News from AILA Victoria Chapter Executive - 23 May 2016


Last week’s State Chapter Executive meeting once again featured a full agenda with much activity to report and some important events and initiatives in the planning. Here’s an update on what is happening across the many different Victorian Committees and working groups.


Events coming up

On Wednesday 25th May, a Public Sector Technical Talk hosted by AILA and Street Furniture will feature presentations by Street Furniture Australia’s Head of Design, Phillip Slattery and Marketing Manager, June Lee Boxsell. Attend this session to discover the newest in hi-tech features for the urban domain, which include Wi-Fi connectivity, charging hubs, solar power, LEDs, composites, 3D printing and more. Breakfast and CPD points provided!

The AILA Victoria State Awards will be held on Thursday 28 July at the University of Melbourne’s Dulux Gallery with an exhibition of entries running over two weeks from Monday 25 July through to Friday 5 August and including both Victorian and Tasmanian project entries. 


Central City Built Form Review

The Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning has led the Central City Built Form Review in partnership with the City of Melbourne officers, and with input from the Office of the Victorian Government Architect. - See more at:

Mark Skiba will lead a working group to make a submission on the proposed amendments, which will have significant implications for public open space allocations in Melbourne’s centre. If you can assist with this important piece of work please contact Felicity McGahan at the Chapter Office who will connect you with the group.



A number of concerned members have recently been in contact to express their frustration with increasingly onerous PowerCor requirements affecting street trees (you may remember that AILA Vic made a submission to PowerCor regarding this important issue some months ago) Given these recent anecdotal reports, the Public Sector and Environment Committees are joining forces to better understand the issues faced by our members and how to address them. If you have recently had any specific project experience you want to share please contact Felicity McGahan at the Chapter Office.


Connection to Country Strategy

Anne Marie Pisani and I represented AILA at the “Clean Air and Urban Landscapes” (CAUL) Hub Indigenous Participation and Engagement Strategy workshop held at RMIT last week. This allowed us to continue AILA’s contribution to discussions about how to best understand indigenous perspectives on urban development as well as making good connections with other individuals and organisations working in this space from around the country.

A preliminary AILA Reconciliation Action Plan has been prepared with input from the National office and will be finalised by the Vic State Connection to Country working Group over the next few weeks. There are also plans to establish a National Working Group with Anne Marie and me as the Victorian State representatives.


Registration Interviews

Registration interviews were held over two days last week. We’d like to acknowledge the time and effort put in by all twelve candidates and also the interview panel of RLAs. Thanks to Ann Morgan-Payler, Craig Cznery, Paul Thompson, Carolynne McNaughtan, Leslie Mohr, Charles Nilsen, Mary Jeavons, Jenny Rayment, Venta Slizys, Alistair Wenn, and Mark Haycox.

Submissions completed

Thanks to a growing number of members who are contributing their time and expertise to AILA Victoria’s advocacy work we are making around one submission a month! Over the last fortnight we have prepared ”Water for Vic Submission” as well as a letter outlining AILA Vic’s key issues on the Western Distributor.


Mary Papaioannou - Vice-President





News from AILA Victoria Chapter Executive - 10 May 2016


We have had an exceptionally busy couple of weeks, which has only be made possible with the continued commitment and energy put in by our members and the Chapter office. A big thank you to those who continue to actively contribute to raising the profile of the profession through events, and raise Landscape Architect’s views on key issues for Victoria through AILA submissions to Government. Our focus has been the delivery of commitments made to National Sponsors (see Events below), launching the Awards, seeking sponsorship and completing submissions.

AILA Fellows

If you know of an AILA member who has made a major contribution to the profession and/or AILA, please consider putting them forward to be considered for AILA Fellowship. Details for nominating individuals and the process of selection can be found here. The Victorian Executive is seeking nominations by Monday 23rd May in order to present them to the National Council at their early July meeting. Please send them to Felicity McGahan asap.

Meeting with Parks Victoria Chief Executive

Felicity and I met with Bradley Fateaux, the (relatively) new CEO of Parks Victoria and Fran Horsley, Director Business Affairs and Innovation, to discuss the potential of developing a strategic partnership between the two organisations. Bradley was the Managing Director of Ontario Parks for 10 years, as well as Chairman of the Canadian Parks Council. He brings amazing knowledge and drive to Parks Victoria. Both Bradley and Fran expressed a keen interest in working with AILA. Bradley will present at a future event about his vision for the organisation and care for our State’s parks system. It is an exciting time for Parks Victoria!

Awards and sponsorships

The awards are open! As the first year of the newly launched National Awards program during the celebration of AILA’s 50th Anniversary year, it is a great time to enter. First entry is free for each organisation and the submission process has been streamlined to encourage participation. We are actively pursuing sponsors for our awards, including State Government Agencies as well as Local Authorities. If your organisation is interested in sponsoring the awards, or a particular award category, please contact Felicity McGahan asap. The night of nights is scheduled for the last week of July, so save the date!

Important current submissions

Review of Native Vegetation Clearing Regulations - Consultation Paper
Thank you to Katie Williams who led AILA’s submission on the above. It will be submitted today. Thank you also to those who contributed to the draft. It can be found on AILA’s submission page here.

Central City Built Form Review – open for comment

The Central City Built Form review is now complete and DELWP are seeking comments. A synthesis report summarises the proposed changes, which have been prepared as a planning scheme amendment. The proposed changes, which will apply to the Hoddle Grid and Southbank, aim to protect the liveability of the city by ensuring the provision of space around tall buildings, the protection of important public spaces from overshadowing, including the Yarra River, and establishment of a reasonable floor area ratio for new developments. The new provisions will also bring Melbourne up to speed with planning rules used by cities across the world, such as New York, Singapore, Vancouver, and Sydney.

I encourage members to engage in this important piece of work, particularly those who work on projects in the central area, or live there! The proposed changes suggest a mechanism which enables the delivery of high quality public realm as part of developments, above and beyond what is being delivered now. AILA will make a formal submission – if you are interested in being part of the working group, let Felicity McGahan know. The deadline for submission is Monday 30th May 5pm.

Western Distributor – urgent engagement required!

Transurban’s proposals for the Western Distributor are out for consultation, closing this Thursday 9pm.

AILA were approached by the Age to provide comment on the proposed options for Hyde Park. See here. Now we are aware of the consultation, the Advocacy group will gear up to write a letter in response to the options, but we encourage individuals to respond. If you want to contribute, please call the Chapter Office today (0401 811 976)!

Event synopsis - DesignBUILD

DesignBUILD was held at the Exhibition Centre at Southbank over three days last week and attracted visitors and exhibitors for around Australia and the World. As a complement to the trade show component of the expo AILA members Jon Shinkfield and Matt McKay participated in well-curated panel discussions with other industry leaders and presented papers on innovation and sustainability. These speaker sessions together with student competitions and an incubator program designed to support new ideas and products, successfully differentiated DesignBUILD from other trade shows. Once again we thank our sponsors Lawn Solution Australia and Flemings Nursery for their support. Amazing work by the Chapter office, Mary Pappaioannou and Nathan Collins for working so hard on this, and to Felicity and Kate for representing AILA on our stand.

Event synopsis - Learning from Barangaroo

Over 50 people attended a presentation by Maria Rigoli on the Barangaroo Headland Park last Thursday 5 May. The event, chaired by Pru Smith, was part of the AILA Landscape Technical series, which was held in partnership with Austral Bricks and Austral Masonry. Maria told the story of the park's evolution and her experience project managing the landscape component of the reserve and central foreshore while at Johnson Pilton Walker. The transformation of this former industrial wharf site into a reinterpretation of the naturalistic form of Sydney Harbour's headlands was truly monumental. Also impressive was the science and research undertaken to deliver the bold vision. This included propagation of 75,000 mostly endemic plants, the technical approach to constructing the soil, re-creation of the steep headland slopes using Austral Masonry pre-cast walls, and the quarrying and re-laying of site sandstone to reinterpret the foreshore. Despite all the controversy that surrounded Barangaroo Reserve prior to it's opening, as one attendee commented on the night - 'no matter what time of day or night you go there are always people at the park'.

Upcoming events

Innovation breakfast

Street Furniture Australia are sponsoring the first of our Innovation Breakfast series on Wednesday 25 May for public sector landscape architects to learn about new innovations in their organisation and their products.

Living Cities Summit proposed for Victoria

Following on from the Living Cities Summit in Canberra, each State is progressing an event to respond to their particular issues and context. A working group is being brought together to progress this initiative, which will be sponsored by Lawn Solutions, as part of their National Sponsorship. If you are interested in contributing, please contact Felicity McGahan.

Emma Appleton - AILA Victoria President 


News from AILA Victoria Chapter Executive - 26 April 2016

The last couple of weeks have been dominated by discussion on our natural assets including native vegetation, water, biodiversity and ecological restoration. It is also has been a time for thinking about recognition of the extraordinary work of landscape architects and allied built environment professionals, with the upcoming 2016 AILA Victorian Awards, and the 2016 Premier’ Sustainability Awards.

Raising AILA’s voice on important issues

AILA is currently finalising a submission to the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) in response to the
Review of Native Vegetation Clearing Regulations - Consultation Paper. 

On reading the draft submission I was disappointed to learn that from 1990-2000 Australia was the only developed first world economy to rank in the top 20 land-clearing nations, rating sixth highest in the world. For Victoria, only 46% of the original vegetation cover remains making it the most cleared state in Australia, and only 1% of the original Victorian grasslands are intact.

More recent policy and regulation saw a shift from a ‘net gain’ objective to a ‘no net loss’ approach to vegetation removal which was a step in the wrong direction. The priority should be to avoid and minimise clearing, and only allow offsets as a last resort. Given this, AILA’s submission supports many of the proposed amendments to current policy, while providing recommendations for further improvements.

Thank you to Kate Williams, the Environment Committee, and others for their great work in preparing the submission. I encourage everyone to learn more and complete the survey before Friday 29 April.

The Victorian Government (DELWP) are also seeking feedback on a draft strategy for
Protecting Victoria's Environment - Biodiversity 2036 and a review of the Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act 1988. If you want to develop a submission for AILA, please let Felicity McGahan know. We encourage individual members to contribute also.

In addition, the Society for Ecological Restoration Australasia (SERA) is finalising a set of national Principles and Standards for the Practice of Ecological Restoration and Rehabilitation across Australia, which has been developed in collaboration with twelve partners including AILA. A very big thank-you to everyone who has contributed, in particular to Zoe Metherell for leading AILA’s involvement in this project. 

DesignBuild fast approaching

If you are looking for Continuing Professional Development (CPD) opportunities, the 2016
DesignBUIILD Expo is happening 4-6 May. AILA are sponsors of the event and have worked with AIA and ACIF to develop and contribute to an excellent Speaker Series Program. Key issues Compliance, Innovation and Sustainability will be discussed. The line-up of speakers includes HASSELL’s Matthew Mackay and REALMStudio’s Jon Shinkfield. Thanks to Mary Pappaioannou, AILA Victorian Vice-President and Felicity McGahan for shaping AILA’s contribution to Design Build.

AILA Fresh has also been actively engaged with the creation of the
AILA 'Meeting Space', at the DesignBUILD exhibition located around the Central HUB, which will be the focus of the networking sessions on the second night of the Exhibition. Thanks to Nathan Collins in particular for bringing this together – great innovation and creativity in a constrained budget environment! Tickets for DesignBuild can be purchased here.

Melbourne International Flower and Garden Show

In March, AILA Fresh and members of the student and graduate community attended the Melbourne International Flower and Garden Show evening event hosted by Lawn Solutions and Jason Hodges (from Better Homes and Gardens). The night included networking and a guided tour by of the award winning designs. Jason also ran through some of the design rationale of the winning Show Gardens, and described what it takes to put together a $50,000 show garden in under two weeks. A big thank-you to Lawn Solutions for hosting this terrific event.


The 2016 AILA Victoria Workshop was held at Urbis last Tuesday 19 April. The AILA Workshop is a informative event for the applicants of the RLA interview process. The evening allows applicants to have a Q&A session with Darren Atkinson and Ashley Sheldrick about their upcoming interview and learn about what the interview panellists will be asking when they are being interviewed. The Workshop has always been well received by applicants and has been beneficial for their interview process.   

Active Committees
The AILA Committees continue to be an active and driving force in Victoria. In addition to the above, the Public Sector Committee are currently leading AILA’s response to the State Government’s Water for Victoria Discussion Paper, and Adrian Gray has recently joined the Membership Committee as co-chair with Darren Atkinson. To find out more and get involved with one of the fantastic AILA Vic Committee’s go here.

How Soon is Now?

The Architect’s Institute of Australia (AIA) National Conference is being held this week in Adelaide from 28th -30th April 2016. ‘How Soon is Now’ will investigate resilience, society, equity and agency, and the transformative power of architecture. For AILA members who are attending the conference or those who live in Adelaide, Parlour and the AIA National Committee for Gender Equity is hosting ‘Women Transforming the City Part 2, to discuss women shaping our cities and environments. This important fringe event is being held at 2.30pm-5pm, Thursday 28th April, and tickets can be purchased from the Parlour website.

Pru Smith - AILA Victoria Secretary 



News from AILA Victoria Chapter Executive - 12 March 2016


Welcome to Autumn. Probably my favourite time of year with the milder weather and great autumn colours. Worryingly though, much of the state is still experiencing very low rainfall resulting in the recent decision by the State Government to place the first order from the Wonthaggi Desalination Plant. To me this emphasizes the need for landscape architects to remain vigilant in advocating for water conservation, harvesting and reuse in as many of our projects as possible.

The Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) has released the Water for Victoria discussion paper for consultation. The discussion paper outlines the need to balance agricultural, industrial, recreational and environmental needs, to get the most out of our water resources. The plan also recognises that the sector needs to work more closely with local communities when making critical decisions about their water supplies.

DELWP are continuing to consult on the Review of the Native Vegetation Clearing Regulations. Since May 2015 DELWP has gathered a broad range of stakeholder views on the regulations through stakeholder and community workshops, surveys, and one on one meetings with groups that have an interest in the regulations.

As part of the next phase of consultation, DELWP has developed a Consultation Paper that sets out proposed improvements to address key issues identified by stakeholders. Have your say here.

If you have any interest in contributing to an AILA Submission on either of the above issues, please contact Felicity at the Chapter office who will put you in contact with the coordinating AILA member for each submission.

Speaking of the environment and things water, we continue to get good feedback on recent events such as the Yarra Riverkeepers. The Chapter office will soon be sending out a survey to those who attended so that we can capture areas of improvement and I urge those who attended to please respond. 

The Victorian Executive met last week for our first formal meeting of 2016, so as you can imagine it was a pretty full agenda. We have new co-chairs of the Public Sector Landscape Architects Committee in Stuart Hale and Tracey O’Connor. Many thanks to Adrian Gray for his time in this role. We had reports from the membership and environment committees, and heard from our Chapter Manager about continuing efforts to secure sponsorship. This remains an important focus as we approach the end of this financial year and work towards a financially sustainable AILA Vic for the future.

Watch out for DesignBUILD in May featuring high profile speakers from the design and building industries. Representing AILA, Jon Shinkfield will be speaking on the topic of Sustainability and Matt MacKay will speak on Innovation. For more information on DesignBUILD and the speaker program visit here.

Lastly, don’t forget to get your entries ready for the 2016 Victorian Awards!

Dean Thornton - AILA Victoria Treasurer 



News from AILA Victoria Chapter Executive - 29 March 2016

Connection to Country

At AILA Victoria’s Connection to Country Symposium held on Friday 18th March over 100 participants were informed, challenged and inspired to engage with an amazing panel of Indigenous speakers and their understanding of the landscape.

In her opening speech, Emma Appleton stated:

“AILA is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, and as part of this AILA Victoria is committed to actively advancing the relationship of Landscape Architects with Victorian Indigenous Communities, to increase knowledge of Victorian Indigenous Culture and to embed this knowledge into the teaching and practice of Landscape Architecture. We believe we have a responsibility as built environment professionals who engage with land, place, culture, history, people, natural systems and context, to engage with Indigenous Culture and advocate for a ‘Connection to County’ approach to design in all projects, strategies, contexts; and at all scales.”

This symposium is part of delivering a wider AILA Victoria Connection to Country Strategy. AILA Victoria was delighted to have initiated Symposium in partnership with City of Melbourne and Indigenous Architecture and Design Victoria, and a huge thank you to both organisations for their generosity and time in putting the day together.

We particularly acknowledge and thank Anne Marie Pisani, Chair of the Connection to Country’ Working Group, for her efforts in making the day such a resounding success. Also, thanks to our amazing Chapter Office, Felicity and Kate, and the Executive for all their work in the lead-up and on the day – it was a highly professional and successful event. We are so pleased to have received a great deal of positive feedback from participants and wanted to thank those that came and contributed! Photos of the day can be found at

Connection to Country Photographs

Next steps

  • The day’s proceedings and discussion were captured by writers Justine Clark and Susie Ashworth. Their work will be made available as a base resource to members shortly.
  • The baseline research into the current level and form of engagement of landscape architects with indigenous community groups is continuing, driven by the ‘Connection to Country’ working group. Expect to see this material in May 2016.
  • As part of this research, all members will soon receive a questionnaire seeking to understand their base knowledge, good case studies, barriers they have encountered and ways to overcome them. Expect this in late April.
  • A Draft Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) is currently being prepared by AILA Victoria and is informed by the Connection to Country Symposium and the research phase. This will lead to the establishment of a National Working Group to test and develop the draft RAP for adoption by Council, recognising that each State will have different strategies, priorities and ways of doing.

Contact Felicity at the Victorian Chapter office if you would like to be part of the continuing conversation.

AILA National Council in Geelong

AILA Victoria was delighted to welcome AILA’s National Council and AILA CEO, Shahana McKenzie,to Melbourne and Geelong last week. The State Executive met with the National Council on Wednesday evening, before they headed to Geelong for the Council meeting on Thursday and Friday. Regional Members joined the Council for a drink and discussion on Thursday evening and then many joined the Friday afternoon session of the ‘Connection to Country’ Symposium in Melbourne before flying back to their respective states. It is a great group of people leading the organisation.

Skyrail submission

A submission was sent to the Level Crossing Removal Authority on the Level Crossing Removal Project: Caulfield to Dandenong (Sky Rail) to advocate for contextually responsive solutions and integrated outcomes that will deliver a positive legacy for the city. Some of the matters raised included ensuring the provision of high quality public spaces and their long-term maintenance; connections for cyclists and pedestrians; increased permeability between neighbourhoods; and ensuring acontemporary and elegant rail structure that minimises visual bulk. Read AILA’s submission here

If you are interested in joining AILA Victoria’s Advocacy Committee or you would like to bring an important topic to AILA’s attention, please feel free to contact Felicity McGahan at the Chapter Office via

Victoria Landscape Architecture Awards 2016

The Victorian Landscape Architecture Awards are opening soon! Watch out for more details about submission opening date and process.

Mary Papaioannou, AILA Victoria Vice-President



News from AILA Victoria Chapter Executive - 15 March 2016

Great news! There is still time to book a place at the Connection to Country Symposium on Friday 18th March 2016. Don’t miss this signature conference as part of AILA’s 50th Year and be part of the continuing conversation. Register now! Click here

Last Wednesday, 9 March, an extremely well attended joint AILA, PIA and AIA event called Over and Under – Taking Crossings to a New Level took place at AIA Victoria. A speaker from each profession presented about Melbourne’s Level Crossing Removal Project which led in to a lively discussion. 70 members of all three organisations attended this networking event. It was a fantastic occasion to mingle with our planning and architecture colleagues and share, debate and challenge each other on the city shaping project.

Some months ago, we raised the issue of Melbourne Water’s plans to remove and not reinstate the trees along St Georges Road through Northcote and Thornbury. Members were encouraged to sign an on-line petition and we are pleased to advise that Melbourne Water have now committed to replace the trees. Melbourne Water state on their website, the following:

We have determined that:

  • when construction begins, the palm trees will be safely removed and stored offsite until a decision about reinstatement is made
  • a tree root barrier/membranewill be installed during construction
  • we willplanta similar number of semi-mature trees.

Wewill continue to work with Darebin City Council, arborists, revegetation specialists and key stakeholders to develop a reinstatement plan that considers the existing uses of the St Georges Road centre-median, community amenity, safety, and our requirement to construct a critical water supply asset.

This is a great outcome for these communities and rightly shows a commitment to the continued greening or our urban environment.

Recently a number of AILA members and Landscape Architects from practice, State and Local government, attended workshops run by the recently formed Yarra River Protection Ministerial Advisory Committee. AILA member Kirsten Bauer is a member of this committee, which again highlights the influential role that landscape architects continue to have in the policy space. We encourage members to look out for future discussion and issues papers regarding the future management of the Yarra River and make comment and submissions as appropriate. For those who attended our Yarra Riverkeepers event, consider yourselves well informed to make comment!

Read more

Dean Thornton, AILA Victoria Treasurer


News from AILA Victoria's Chapter Executive - 29th February 2016

AILA is having a voice in major city conversations as part of celebrating our 50th anniversary, raising the profile of our profession’s contribution to many important issues. February 26 saw the first premier event for the year - the 'Yarra Riverkeepers' which coincided with early discussions on the Yarra River Protection Act (see below). Coming up on the 18 March is the second premier event on 'Connection to Country' (see below).

AILA is also committed to providing innovative CPD opportunities for members, such as the Landscape Technical CPD session on 'Specifying Timber and Coatings’ which was supported by Intergrain and Auswest Timbers on 23 February, as well as enabling cross-displinary conversations and networking with allied professions. Join AILA, PIA and AIA to discuss the 'Victorian Government's Grade Separations' on 9 March 2016.

Connection to Country

The second major ‘city conversation’ event to celebrate AILA’s 50th anniversary year will be the ‘Connection to Country’ Symposium on 18 March 2016. This day-long symposium will be delivered in partnership with the City of Melbourne and Indigenous Architecture and Design Victoria. The day will provide a deeper understanding of Victorian Cultural Landscapes, and how to respectfully and better engage with Indigenous Communities to inform and enrich design practice. It is part of an important continuing conversation about how we consider culture and nature in the shaping of our future places and is a key component of AILA Victoria’s strategy to actively advance the relationship of Landscape Architects with Victorian Indigenous Communities.

Yarra River Protection Ministerial Advisory Committee

The new Yarra River Protection Ministerial Advisory Committee (MAC) has been recently formed to review and update the planning rules which govern the 240-kilometre stretch of the river between Richmond and Warrandyte. The MAC will drive consultation and draft the new Yarra River Protection Act, legislating for long-term protection.
AILA is urging the MAC to be brave in its protection of the Yarra, and consider the careful management of the river - from its source to the sea.

AILA states:

  • The Yarra should be secured as a public asset, and not privatised or eroded by poor quality and over-scaled development.
  • The story of the Yarra in the culture of our city, and how it connects towns, places and people should be reclaimed, elevated and celebrated in public consciousness, through campaigns and media.
  • Indigenous cultural land history is the basis of this story and should inform our approach to future management and understanding of the Yarra.
  • An integrated management plan, with clear roles and responsibilities of public agencies, is essential to sustain the health of the Yarra and its tributaries, including the water quality, and its riparian landscape. The plan should extend from the Yarra’s source to the sea.
  • Public access to the river should be carefully and creatively designed to ‘touch the earth lightly’, and not erode the natural beauty of the Yarra.
  • AILA released this to the media on Friday coinciding with the event and will prepare a formal submission to the Yarra River Protection MAC in March 2016. Please contact Felicity McGahan if you want to get involved.

Yarra Riverkeepers Seminar and Boat Tour

On Friday 26 February I had the pleasure of attending the Yarra Rivekeepers event which was the first major ‘city conversation’ event to celebrate AILA’s 50th anniversary year. Over 60 landscape architects and allied built environment professionals met at the fabulous new at Library at the Dock in Docklands where we heard from a number of speakers who spoke about the Yarra and its importance to our city’s culture, its history and its future. It was great to have representation from practice, State and Local Government and academia and a broad range of professional experience, including students, graduates, registered landscape architects and Fellows.

Kicking off with Andrew Kelly from the Yarra Riverkeepers, Andrew spoke of the need to manage development to protect the river as a primary source of city’s parklands. He discussed the need to increase park spaces particularly around the Docklands, ensuring these spaces maximise habitat values, and of providing opportunities for the Docklands to better reach and connect with the water.

Historian Dr Gary Presland then gave us a different perspective of Melbourne’s waterways and their cultural importance to the indigenous tribes of the Kulin nation. These were the areas where the clans would gather a couple of times a year along the lagoons, swamps and estuaries to undertake ceremonies and the exchange of wives which was essential business for the Kulin people.

Back to the present day, Andrew Mellor from Melbourne Water took us on a land management journey downstream through the changing catchment of the Yarra. Commencing at the pristine streams of the upper catchment; traveling through the modified agricultural landscapes and into the urbanised areas; before ending at our city’s gateway - the Docklands.

Mike Scott from Planisphere presented the need for a strategic metropolitan level vision for the Yarra. Mike also discussed the importance of the landscape alongside the water and how it contributes to the river’s sense of space. He made the point that mandatory building height and set-back controls are essential in ensuring this illusion of space is maintained.

The seminar ended with Cameron Bergmeier who presented the Yarra Bend Park Master Plan prepared by Oculus and discussed Parks Victoria role in managing the land around sections of the Yarra.

The speakers reinforced the recreational, environmental, spiritual and cultural significance of the Yarra River and how it is a part of the identity of Melbourne. A key collective message was the strategic importance of the river's landscape and that we must lead with landscape rather than with development to protect this great river against short term interests. AILA is committed to celebrating the Yarra.

We then went on a leisurely cruise of the river to the backdrop of commentary from Andrew Kelly and others. This provided a unique opportunity to experience the natural beauty of the Yarra from a different perspective, and learn more of the history, sights and challenges of the river. A highlight of the tour was the short stop at Herring Island which allowed us to walk through the sculpture park which is a hidden city gem. As the light was being to fade the tour docked at Federation Square where we disembarked and continued the conversations from the day over a glass of wine. Huge thanks to the Environment Group, especially Meredith Dobbie, Sue Ozanne, and Sarah Rivett.

Pru Smith - AILA Victoria Secretary 



News from AILA Victoria's Chapter Executive - 15th February 2016


It is only two weeks away from the first AILA premier event of 2016. Join the Yarra Riverkeeper and other experts to contribute to the discussion of how we can protect and celebrate the Yarra. 

Connection to Country

The second AILA Victoria premier event of 2016 will be the ‘Connection to Country’ Symposium on 18th March 2016 at ZINC, Federation Square. The event will be delivered in partnership with the City of Melbourne and Indigenous Architecture and Design Victoria (IADV), and is for Landscape Architects, Architects, Urban Planners, city decision makers and built environment educators.

This day-long symposium will provide Victorian built environment professionals with a deeper understanding of Victorian Cultural Landscapes, and how to respectfully and better engage with Indigenous Communities to inform and enrich design practice in Victoria and Australia. It is part of an important continuing conversation about how we consider culture and nature in the shaping of our future places and is a key component of AILA Victoria’s strategy to actively advance the relationship of Landscape Architects with Victorian Indigenous Communities.

Chaired by Rueben Berg, Director IADV, attendees will hear from Indigenous leaders, landscape architects, artists, architects, and advocates about how to better acknowledge, interpret and respond to Indigenous land history and culture in projects. Alan Titchener, Past President and Fellow of the New Zealand Institute of Landscape Architects, a Maori Elder and one of the first Maori Landscape Architects, will share his experience of being involved in the development of the Te Aranga Maori Design Principles and their incorporation into the City of Auckland Design Manual.

The day will include presentations, panel discussions, lunchtime tours and workshops in the afternoon. Board members of AILA’s National Council will join to hear the final panel discussion, and learning from the day will inform the further development of AILA’s Reconciliation Action Plan.

Launch of Indigenous Engagement and Participation Strategy

In aligned news, the Clean Air and Urban Landscapes (CAUL) Hub launched their Indigenous Engagement and Participation Strategy on February 12, 2016. The Hon Greg Hunt, MP, Minister for the Environment and Acting Minister for Cities launched the program, and Mary Papaioannou, Anne-Marie Pisani and Felicity McGahan represented AILA at the event. The CAUL Hub is a consortium in the National Environmental Science Programme which supports six research hubs undertaking environmental research about air quality, urban greening, liveable urban systems and urban biodiversity. The mission of the CAUL Hub is to take a comprehensive view of the sustainability and liveability of urban environments. Click here for more information.

Living Cities Workshop in Canberra

The Living Cities Workshop, held in Canberra last week has been outlined in the National President’s message. The event was well attended by members of AILA Victoria, many of them representing their organisations. The OVGA, MPA, City of Melbourne, Urban Design Forum, and CAUL Hub contributed to the day. Mark Frisby, immediate Past National President attended, and should be acknowledged for consistently advocating at a Federal level for this agenda during his term, alongside AILA’s CEO, Shahana McKenzie. Green Infrastructure is firmly on the agenda at a federal level!


Emma Appleton - AILA Victoria President 

News from AILA Victoria's Chapter Executive - 1st February 2016

Happy New Year and a warm welcome back from the AILA Victoria Executive and Chapter office!

As promised, the Victorian calendar of events during AILA’s 50th birthday year will be marked by a number of significant opportunities designed to engage with and inform our members, decision makers and the public about key issues affecting our city, our state and the profession of Landscape Architecture.

The first of these events for 2016 focuses on the Yarra River and introduces attendees to the Yarra River Keeper. The timing of the event coincides with the formation of the Yarra River Protection Ministerial Advisory Committee (MAC) established by Minister for Planning Richard Wynne to review the planning rules which govern the 240-kilometre stretch of the river between Richmond and Warrandyte. The remit of the Committee is to drive consultation and draft the new Yarra River Protection Act, legislating for long-term protection. Congratulations to Kirsten Bauer, former AILA Victorian President (2011-2013) and Director at Aspect Studios, for her appointment to the MAC! It is great to have the expertise of a landscape architect contributing to such an important issue of our city and Victoria.

AILA supports the position long held by the Yarra River Keeper, that planning decisions in the river corridor should be overseen by a single authority which has a whole-of-river remit, beyond local council boundaries to promote a long-term vision for the Yarra corridor as a continuous corridor of public open space and unbroken wildlife habitat.

Minister Wynne is quoted as saying that “The Yarra will struggle to cope with the demands of a growing modern city without our protection.” So, what needs to be done? And what is the role of Landscape Architects?

The Yarra River Keepers Event will be held on Friday 26th February at xpm, starting at The Dock Library with a series of presentations designed to set the cultural and environmental context of the Yarra River and consider its role in Melbourne’s future. Speakers from Melbourne Water and Parks Victoria will be preceded by Andrew Kelly, the Yarra River Keeper and Dr Gary Presland, well known Melbourne historian and writer.

Further presentations will be made on the development pressures on the Yarra River as a Landscape Corridor, covering the landscape typologies along the corridor, the landscape experience ‘envelope’, the relationship between built form and landscape in the corridor and the vital planning issue of building setbacks.

The event will culminate in a Yarra boat trip led by the Yarra River Keeper, during which presenters and other experts from government agencies and private practice will provide commentary and answer questions. The event will help inform and frame AILA’s position when submissions are requested as part of the consultation process of the MAC.

The event is sure to generate vigorous discussion about the Yarra River and its corridor, and add to the increasing momentum around the theme of green infrastructure – a key focus for AILA’s advocacy work in 2016.

Here’s the link for booking your ticket to the event and to the full AILA Victoria Events Calender for 2016. Plan ahead so you don’t miss out.

AILA Victoria is very excited to welcome an exterior lighting manufacturer WE-EF LIGHTING as a Victoria Supporting Partner. WE-EF are already supporters of AILA in South Australia, Queensland and the National Festival. They are based in Braeside, Victoria so this new partnership is a very appropriate one. Keep an eye out for events that will be brought to you by WE-EF!

Mary Papaioannou - AILA Victoria Vice-President

News from AILA Victoria's Chapter Executive - 16th December 2015

On Monday night, the Committees, award jurors, members who have contributed to submissions or workshops on behalf of AILA, and our fantastic sponsors joined the State Executive and Chapter office to celebrate great work done and look forward to 2016. Boasting the largest membership and highest membership retention rate of 96%, the Victorian Chapter is in a strong position to advocate on key issues in a knowledgeable and forthright way.

As this is the last message of the year – here’s a quick recap and a forward plan.

The current Victorian AILA executive is now six months into their two year term. Since July, we have:

  • Welcomed Felicity McGahan as the new Chapter Manager to join Kate Western, events coordinator.
  • Aligned our Victorian Strategy and Operational Plan to the National Strategy, to grow membership, raise the profile of profession, advocate to government and run a sustainable AILA.
  • Developed an events strategy for 2016, to capitalise on, and celebrate AILA's 50 year anniversary.
  • Established terms of reference for many of the State Committees.

With a strong Chapter Office working with the National team, a defined strategy and the coordinated efforts of our State Committees, Working Groups and members, AILA Victoria has:

  • Hosted an amazing Festival in Melbourne.
  • Run a fantastic awards program and ceremony.
  • Promoted AILA's voice through formal submissions on a wide range of strategic and technical issues. These include the PowerCor draft technical standards, Better Apartments, Fishermans Bend letter to the Ministerial Advisory Committee, Punt Road Masterplan, Prahran’s housing estates master plan, Clean Air Agreement discussion paper, and questioning tree removal by VicRoads, as well as a response to VCAT’s decision on the Nightingale Apartments.
  • Contributed AILA’s views in workshops following receipt of our submissions.
  • Written a formal submission to National Council to gain support for AILA Victoria’s pursuit of a ‘Connection to Country’ strategy.
  • Contributed to ‘My Park Rules’, with a fantastic state finalist
  • Secured some wonderful new sponsors and rekindled established relationships.

In 2016, AILA celebrates 50 years. In January we will launch our events strategy to set out our major events of the year.

In the first half of the year, we will be hosting a National Council meeting and have at least three major events which are not to be missed. Pencil them into your diaries now!

In late February, the Yarra River Keeper’s event will provide knowledge, generate debate and elevate the role of the river in our city.

On March 18, AILA Victoria and City of Melbourne will host a ‘Connection to Country’ Symposium to develop our profession’s capacity to engage with indigenous communities and culture.
And last but not least, we will be running the awards program to align with the new National Awards – so another great opportunity to showcase your work and elevate landscape architect’s role in shaping our cities, towns and landscapes across Victoria.

On behalf of me, Mary, Pru, Dean, Felicity and Kate, a very happy Holiday Season! We look forward to working with you all in the new year!

Emma Appleton - AILA Victoria President 

News from AILA Victoria’s Chapter Executive – 8th December 2015

December already. Hope all our members and sponsors are looking forward to a break after a busy 2015. It’s been a big one for AILA and next year’s 50th Anniversary of AILA is sure to be even greater.

As always, AILA is on the lookout for sponsors who fit with our strategic direction and their support allows us to run the events and CPD programs throughout the year. With 2016 being the 50th year of AILA, we are extra keen to get more sponsors on board and big efforts are underway to achieve this. If you have any ideas on suitable sponsor partners, please let Felicity in the State Chapter office know.

At the last state Executive meeting, the events strategy for 2016 was worked through with the broader Executive, including Committee Chairs. More detail on this next year, however the aim is to give better clarity to members about opportunities to engage, get closer alignment between sponsorship, events and CPD, and to leverage all events to raise the profile of landscape architects and/ or advocate to Government.

Advocacy efforts continue with several members participating in forums to ensure the voices of Landscape Architects are heard. Committee members last week attended consultation workshops on the Plan Melbourne Refresh Discussion Paper. Among other topics there was much to say on the theme of ‘a more resilient Melbourne’ in regards to climate change and how the conversation might be better framed to engage people through the notion of liveability. There was also discussion of strategies to encourage increased uptake of green infrastructure and urban greening principles at both government and private sector levels to further mitigate against the potential impacts of climate change. An AILA submission in response to the paper is currently being coordinated and is due on the 18th of December. Thanks to Brenton Beggs, Mark Frisby and Felicity McGahan for their representation at this workshop.

Emma Appleton presented at a ‘Linking Ecology to Architecture’ Forum at RMIT as part of a research project. Emma Appleton, Mary Papaioannou, and Mark Frisby attended the ADC Forum’s Creating Healthy Cities Summit in Melbourne on behalf of AILA, where two Federal Ministers and two State Ministers spoke of the importance of great design in our cities. They led lunchtime workshops on Urban Social Equity, Urban Forests and Greening Cities and Human-centric value-based design; the outputs from these will inform the report from the conference. The Municipal Association of Victoria (MAV) is holding a Local Government Shade Forum on December 8th. AILA members Mary Papaioannou and Martin Reeves are giving presentations on what this means from a landscape architect’s perspective.

Finally a personal plea to support this petition at the link below. Melbourne Water are planning on replacement of water mains along St Georges Road through Northcote and Thornbury which will involve removal of over 400 trees planted 20 years ago. This has seen the transformation of this formerly bleak arterial road into a young boulevard and one of Melbourne’s busiest bicycle routes. Their current plan is to not replace the trees. Darebin Council have written to the Minister requesting reconsideration and we should add our voice to this plea. Other members of the community have come out requesting that trees not be fully replaced due to safety concerns with pedestrian, cars and bikes. Surely this calls for the preparation of a master plan that seeks to achieve a balanced outcome.

Protect St Georges Rd Landscape Petition

Dean Thornton - Treasurer

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