Ngamawari begins: Interim park coming to Acton Waterfront in 2025

Work has officially begun on Ngamawari, the 30,000sqm public park celebrating Ngunnawal culture and history on the Acton Waterfront.

The City Renewal Authority’s Acting Deputy Chief Executive Officer Jen Ramsay said an interim park will open in 2025 and provide a place for people to relax by the lake, exercise and enjoy events and activities.

“This is an exciting milestone in the ongoing transformation of the Acton Waterfront,” Ms Ramsay said.

“These works will not only deliver an interim park next year, but also provide the essential infrastructure for a future Ngunnawal-themed permanent park and city neighbourhood.

“It’s about enlivening the area as soon as possible while also laying the foundations for a major lakeside destination for locals and visitors.”

Local construction company Complex Co is constructing the interim park, with its features to include:

  • Grassed areas, garden beds and retaining walls.
  • Temporary lighting and shade structures.
  • Hardstand spaces to support events and food and coffee options.
  • Key infrastructure like stormwater and additional infill, as well as secure access for heavy vehicles, maintenance and emergency vehicles.

The permanent park will extend the size, experience and amenities at Ngamawari once completed. Ms Ramsay said this will result in a largescale and culturally significant public space for all Canberrans.

“Ngamawari has been designed hand-in-hand with local Ngunnawal community members and creatives,” Ms Ramsay said.

“From native plantings to artworks, Ngunnawal culture and history will be embedded throughout the expansive park.

“It will provide a special experience to all who explore the planned adventure playground, extensive native gardens, pavilions and event spaces over the coming decades.”

Ngamawari will follow the construction of neighbouring Henry Rolland Park in 2018 and the lake reclamation, 700m boardwalk and public beach in 2022.

The park’s name – Ngamawari (pronounced pronounced nar-mar-wa-ree) – was gifted by Ngunnawal community representatives in November 2023. It means ‘cave place’ in Ngunnawal language and recognises the cultural importance of the limestone caves flooded during the creation of Lake Burley Griffin and the role they played for shelter and art along the Molonglo River.

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