A major metropolitan national park in Adelaide’s southern suburbs has received a significant boost with the Marshall Government committing $10 million over the next four years to make it a reality.
The $10 million will be allocated in the Marshall Liberal Government’s first State Budget to be delivered on 4 September.
Glenthorne National Park will be a 1,500-hectare site combining O’Halloran Hill Recreation Park, Hallett Cove and Marino conservation parks, Happy Valley Reservoir and the Field River Valley, as well as the long-threatened Glenthorne Farm.
Minister for Environment and Water David Speirs said Glenthorne National Park will be a significant environmental undertaking by the new government.
“Glenthorne will be Adelaide’s second major metropolitan national park and will be see large tracts of open space preserved and revitalised for future generations,” said Minister Speirs.
“The vision includes significant recreation opportunities such as walking and bike trails, picnic areas, camp grounds and 200 hectares of native revegetation which will all be considered as part of extensive community consultation.
“It is also likely to include a new nature playground similar to the one recently developed at Morialta Conservation Park.
“While a new national park will take decades to bring to life in full, our initial investment in the park will be focused on providing basic infrastructure including amenities for visitors, walking and cycling trails and a destination which is expected to draw people from far and wide.”
A consultation process to design the park in partnership with the community is being developed and a public open day is expected before the end of the year.
Initial work at the site will begin imminently with parts of the park expected to be open to the public by the end of 2019.
The $10 million funding will also include investment in a large-scale revegetation partnership with the University of Adelaide that will result in the creation of an urban forest.
“Our partnership with the University of Adelaide is crucial to delivering the vision that we desire for Glenthorne National Park,” said Minister Speirs.
“The urban forest will have significant environmental benefits and provide a home for native birds and animals, many of which are endangered as a result of habitat loss.
“Community engagement will be central to the creation of this new nature playground and we will hold a stakeholder forum in the coming weeks.
“We want surrounding communities to have significant input into Glenthorne National Park and we want it to be shaped by those that will use it.
“This project is a key election commitment for the Marshall Government and this funding announcement will allow us to realise the full environmental and recreational potential of this land.”