Environment – Moonee Ponds Creek

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Moonee Ponds Creek near Arden St
Moonee Ponds Creek near Arden St

At The Huddle, one of the places we learn about through observation and images is the Moonee Ponds Creek.

The Moonee Ponds Creek is a neglected environment only a block away from The Huddle. Though many students live close to it, they do not recall the creek readily. Having been a swampy area with seasonal flooding, I understand the creek is currently categorized as a drain. Further upstream, it runs along a freeway and has been a concreted environment since the 1960’s. Near Arden St, it still tends to flood and running alongside the creek’s edge are a trainline, a bike path and an overhead freeway. Despite the urbanisation of the creek, with a focus on transport and other infrastructure, there is life in and around the creek.

The Huddle invites young people to document what they see along the creek on video. It also invites them to consider their vision for what a creek and indeed this particular creek should be like.

To date we have discovered a lot of wildlife at the creek including – black swans, ibis, turtles, ducks; indigenous reeds, peppercorn trees and grasses. We have also noticed that it is a flood plane which floods regularly, that people live under the bridges, and that there are gas lines, factories, an electrical station and a plethora of train infrastructure between here and the Docklands.

Young people visiting The Huddle have not been aware that there are major plans for development along the creek. This includes the plans relating to the Arden Macaulay Structure Plan, the East-West Road Link and a train station at Arden St. The vision young people at The Huddle have for the creek is that it should be a cleaner environment, that it should make space for plants and animals and that the impact of urbanization on the natural environment should be considered in future planning.

Their films document the environment as it is today. We wonder what will become of it in the near future …..photo 11

Moonee Ponds Creek near Arden Street
Moonee Ponds Creek near Arden Street

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One student, the daughter of a cameraman from Iraq who has migrated to Australia, brought along her own video camera and made a movie narrated in her first language. I look forward to seeing what she may create in the future.

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Kids filming under Citylink Electrical station on the creek

Author: maireadhannan

Community engagement through the arts and education. Musician and composer. I initiate and develop community arts and education projects to improve social cohesion including: education programs at The Huddle, arts projects, digital storytelling to inspire creativity, build identity and belonging and empower diverse communities in a range of settings.

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