Blue Mountains News

Work to begin on the Wentworth Falls Lake Precinct upgrade

By Blue Mountains City Council
Posted: 12 Feb 2024
Aerial view of Wentworth Falls Lake
Construction on the first stage of upgrades at Wentworth Falls Lake Precinct is due to start on Monday 19 February, providing key accessibility improvements for the community.

During construction, there will be no community access to much of the east side of the lake for more than 12 months. The boat ramp will also be inaccessible for periods.

Blue Mountains Mayor, Mark Greenhill, said: “We’re now at the point of delivering on the community’s vision for the lake precinct. The first stage of work is going to provide a level of accessibility for residents and visitors that hasn’t previously been achievable along the eastern side of the lake.

“It’s an encouraging thought that, from the new walkway and viewing platform, people who may have previously had difficulties accessing this side of the lake will now be able to enjoy the serene views this location provides.

“We realise that these works will be a disruption to residents and visitors for a lengthy period, and we thank everyone for their patience.”

The first stage of the upgrade program includes a new accessible pedestrian walkway and viewing platform on the eastern side of the lake. An accessible path will then link this new structure to a formalised, sealed carpark on Waratah Road, to the north.

These improvements launch a complex program of upgrades that will improve accessibility, safety and infrastructure across the precinct, including:

  • Necessary dam, spillway and pedestrian bridge improvements, that will see water management infrastructure significantly upgraded, improving the control of water levels for fire protection and community resilience. A new accessible path across the dam wall will also be constructed.
  • An upgraded boat ramp, landscaping and staging area for emergency vehicles.
  • Improved recreational facilities, including precinct seating, shelters and BBQ facilities.
  • A precinct walk around the lake and an Active Transport Link.
  • Formalised carparks on Sinclair Crescent.

While the first stage of the upgrade program focuses on improved accessibility, the second stage provides increased protections from future flood and fire events through improvements to the dam, spillway, spillway pedestrian bridge and the boat ramp.

An important part of the upgrade process has been a focus on community engagement as plans and designs have matured. Community feedback led to design changes for the accessible walkway and viewing platform, reducing the amount of Corten steel in the structure.

Council listened to the community’s call for both more parking and the completion of a precinct walk around the lake. In addition to the new carpark on Waratah Road, two carparks will be constructed on Sinclair Crescent, providing approximately 90 spaces in total.

Once complete, the precinct walk will link Sinclair Crescent, Waratah Road, Banksia Road and Canberra Street and integrate the new pedestrian walkway, viewing platform and spillway bridge.

While every opportunity will be taken to lessen the impact of the upgrade work, there will be some unavoidable disruption, given the nature and location of the work to be done.

When work starts on 19 February:

  • There will be no community access to much of the east side of the lake. Initially, there will be no access to the spillway bridge and walking tracks to Waratah Road, including paths fromBellevue Rd, Apanie Ln/Lake St. However, during the first stage of construction, visitors will still be able to walk along the dam wall up to the closed spillway. When work on the dam and spillway commences, the dam wall walk will also need to close.
  • The boat ramp area will be inaccessible, as it is a designated site compound and construction material will be transported across the water.
  • The Waratah Road carpark will be inaccessible as this will also serve as a construction compound, before work is done to seal the area, providing four parking spaces (including one accessible space) and link it to the accessible walking path.

These areas will also need to remain closed for work to take place on the dam and spillway, which is anticipated to commence in mid to late 2024.

As works progress, areas may be progressively reopened to the community.

All plans are in line with the community-endorsed masterplan for the district park.

Wentworth Falls Lake is one of four district parks in the Blue Mountains. District Parks are large and high-quality parks that cater to the needs of the broader Blue Mountains community and visitors to the City. They offer a wider variety of activities and settings and are often the most popular parks and playgrounds.

To find out more about the Wentworth Falls Lake Precinct upgrade and to stay up to date with progress, visit: here

Map of upcoming works at Wentworth Falls Lake Precinct
 
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