Boroondara Bulletin - November 2021

Boroondara Bulletin - November 2021 kreynold Thu 21 October 2021
Large tree with sun shining through.

Our Climate Action Plan is now live

Adopted unanimously in late-September, our Climate Action Plan sets a 10-year path for Council and community.

Read more about our Climate Action Plan

Remembrance Day and image of a shrine.

Commemorate Remembrance Day

From researching your military ancestors to visiting a war memorial, here's how to commemorate Remembrance Day in Boroondara.

Find out more about Remembrance Day

Girl holding items for recycling.

Where does your recycling go?

Ever wondered what happens to your recyclables once they're collected? Find out here, along with recycling and e-waste tips.

Try our tips

Two young children reading books.

How to choose the perfect kids' book

Boroondara Library Service's new youth and children content hub brings together reading advice and age-tailored book lists.

Choose a book today

Message from the Mayor, Cr Garry Thompson

Message from the Mayor, Cr Garry Thompson kreynold Thu 21 October 2021

When we put the concept of a Climate Action Plan to our community last year your response was clear – responding to climate change and safeguarding our environment is a high priority for you.

I am now pleased and proud to tell you that our Climate Action Plan has been unanimously endorsed by Council. We have a clear vision of what we want to achieve and – more importantly – clearly defined steps that we must implement to make this a reality.

We have committed to being a net carbon-neutral Council by 2022, and to supporting our community to being net carbon neutral by 2035. By 2040 we are targeting actual emissions reduction of 100 per cent on FY 2007/08 emissions for Council, and on 2020 emissions for our wider Boroondara community.

How will we do this? By making changes both big and small – from planting more trees to tripling the number of Boroondara buildings with solar energy systems. From using more recycled materials in our projects and operations to encouraging community members to grow their own fruit and vegetables at home. From ensuring there is access to electric vehicle charging within 2 kilometres of all activity centres to providing regular
sustainability education and advice to our community.

To keep us on track and keep you informed, we will report on our performance every year, and will review and update the plan at its halfway mark after five years.

I encourage you to read more about this on pages 6 and 7, and you can find out more detailed information and be kept up to date by visiting

There’s plenty more to read about in this Bulletin issue, from important swim-safety tips on page 3, to an interview with long-time Boroondara
sculptor Michael Meszaros, whose on-again off-again 50-year retrospective exhibition at the Town Hall Gallery is an impressive example of pandemic resilience. You can read it on pages 14 and 15.

Cr Garry Thompson
Mayor of Boroondara 

Tackling climate change together

Tackling climate change together kreynold Thu 21 October 2021

Council has adopted our new Climate Action Plan (CAP), paving the way forward for the next 10 years by setting out how we will respond to climate change together with our community.

The CAP and supporting Implementation Plan were adopted unanimously on 27 September.

We have heard loud and clear that environmental sustainability is an important issue for our community. We recognise the global movement towards zero emissions and agree Boroondara should be part of this movement. Our vision is that everyone who lives, works and plays in Boroondara will come together to achieve our collective goals outlined in the CAP.

A declaration of a climate emergency was also recently passed by Council, in acknowledgement of our community’s strong desire to take action on climate change. For the purposes of Boroondara a climate emergency is defined by reference to the Climate Action Plan implementation measures.

The CAP has been shaped by our community throughout its development, and we look forward to continuing to support you all in reducing our City’s environmental footprint.

Sun shining through the branches of a tree.
A streetscape illustration with Council's targets: Council is net carbon neutral by 2022. 90% Council actual emission reduction by 2030. 100% Council actual emission by 2040.

To support the achievement of these targets, by 2030 we will:

  • Install an additional 1MW (megawatt) of solar PV across Council buildings
  • Collect 65ML (megalitres) of water from alternative sources per year
  • Increase the number of street trees from 66,000 to 80,000
  • Increase the land managed for biodiversity from 51 hectares to 61 hectares
  • Reduce the number of Council buildings that use gas by 50%
  • Make sure our Council vehicles are 90% electric (or other low-emission options).
Streetscape illustration with our community's inspirational targets: Boroondara is net carbon neutral by 2035. 60% Boroondara net emission reduction by 2030. 100% Boroondara actual emission reduction by 2040.

To support the community in achieving these targets, we will action the following before 2030:

  • Support the installation of more 50,000 kw solar PV by tripling the number of buildings with solar energy systems
  • Support residents and schools to plant 50,000 new native plants, including 10,000 trees
  • Help increase the tree cover in Boroondara from 28% to 30%
  • Make sure there is access to electric vehicle (EV) charging within 2km of all activity centres
  • Provide sustainability workshops and education opportunities for 3,000 people each year
  • Encourage the community to only use 130 litres of water per person per day
  • Help you to divert at least 80% of waste from landfill.

To learn more, visit Climate Action Plan or call (03) 9278 4444.

Where does your recycling go?

Where does your recycling go? kreynold Thu 21 October 2021

Where does your recycling go?

Have you ever wondered what happens to your recyclables once they’re collected? Different Councils have different processing partners, so the materials they accept and the processing journey can differ.


In Boroondara, our collection contractor Cleanaway collects your recycling material from your kerbside bin and takes it to VISY’s Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) in Springvale.


At VISY’s MRF, the recycling material is passed through a number of decontamination processes. It’s a fast, manual process so it can be difficult for VISY staff to capture all contamination, which is why we need to ensure only accepted items are placed in your bin.


The material is then sent around the MRF via a series of conveyor belts, where it is separated out using advanced sorting technology into specific material streams such as glass, plastics, paper, steel and aluminium. Separated materials are baled up for processing and are then turned into new products.


VISY’s packaging business processes most of the materials to make new packaging. For example, cardboard is turned into cardboard boxes, and cans are made into new cans.

To learn more, visit Where does your recycling and waste go? or call (03) 9278 4444.

Girl holding items of recycling.

Put the right thing in your bin

This National Recycling Week (8 to 14 November), we encourage you to stop and take the time to think about the items you’re placing in your recycling bin to help prevent contamination and ensure your recycling efforts really count.

Our top recycling tips:

  • Keep your items empty and loose – don’t bag your recycling. Bagged material can jam the sorting machines and end up in landfill instead. Take plastic bags to REDcycle bins at Coles and Woolworths.
  • If in doubt, check first – use our helpful A to Z recycling and waste guide to check your item is recyclable.
  • Remember there are many specialist recycling services beyond just your household collection that can be used – ask your local retailers about any services they offer to take responsibility for the waste they generate.

How to recycle your electronic items

If it has a plug, battery, cord or any other power supply and is not working or is unwanted, it is e-waste. These items are now processed in a separate recycling program, and we offer several options to help you recycle these items correctly.
Of course it’s always best to try repairing an item before recycling it. The North Balwyn Repair Cafe can show you how to fix broken e-waste items, or if it’s in good condition consider donating it to a charity shop.

Boroondara Recycling and Waste Centre

E-waste items of all sizes can be recycled at our Boroondara Recycling and Waste Centre at 648 Riversdale Road in Camberwell, COVID restrictions permitting. There are no fees for dropping off small to medium-sized e-waste (up to the size of a large microwave), however fees do apply for bigger items such as fridges, freezers and old air-conditioners.

E-waste banks

Did you know we have six small e-waste collection points for smaller items like batteries, mobile phones, cables and broken kettles? COVID restrictions allowing, drop them at one of the following locations for recycling:

  • Camberwell Customer Service: 8 Inglesby Rd, Camberwell
  • Boroondara Sports Complex: 271c Belmore Rd, Balwyn North
  • Ashburton Pool and Recreation Centre: 8 Warner Ave, Ashburton
  • Hawthorn Arts Centre: 360 Burwood Rd, Hawthorn
  • Kew Library: corner Cotham Rd and Civic Drive, Kew
  • Greythorn Community Hub and Library Lounge: 2 Centre Way, Balwyn North

Hard waste collections

Households that have their kerbside bins collected by Council can book up to two hard-waste collections a year. After collection, we will separate the e-waste from other items for recycling for you. Visit Book a hard waste collection for more details.

Recycle via your retailer

Many retailers will take back your old e-waste when you buy a replacement item. Ask before you buy.

To learn more visit E-waste or call (03) 9278 4444.

Young girl putting e-watse in a council e-waste bank.

How to commemorate Remembrance Day

How to commemorate Remembrance Day kreynold Thu 21 October 2021

Paying respects to Boroondara’s fallen soldiers.

Marked annually on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, Remembrance Day serves as an opportunity to pause and reflect on
the sacrifices of Australia’s servicemen and women.

Here are a few ways you can pay your respects this Remembrance Day:

Buy or borrow a wartime book

Over the years, Council has proudly created a series of books for adults and children reflecting on our local wartime history, with the support of grants from the Department of Veterans Affairs:

  • North Balwyn RSL Sub-Branch: Remembering our members
  • Boroondara Remembers: Stories of World War I
  • Annie’s War: The Story of One Boroondara Family’s Wartime Experience

These books tell the stories of local servicemen and women and their families. Each can be borrowed from Boroondara’s libraries or bought as a keepsake through the Boroondara Arts Shop.

To learn about the books and make a purchase, visit our Shop.

A war memorial.

Visit a war memorial

Learn about the history and significance of war memorials around Boroondara, including those at Surrey Gardens in Surrey Hills, Beckett Park in Balwyn and St James Park in Hawthorn.

To find out more, and locate a war memorial near you, visit Boroondara's war memorials.

Look for a service

To find if there are services in your area, get in touch with the RSL at RSL Victoria.

Find your local RSL branch.

Light up war memorial.

Libraries launch new youth content hub

Libraries launch new youth content hub kreynold Thu 21 October 2021

Boroondara Library Service’s new youth and children content hub brings together reading advice and age-tailored book tips.

We know that reading with children is one of the best ways to help them explore words, ideas, characters and magical lands, and establish an early love of books. It introduces children to the world of storytelling, promotes discussion, and helps parents to learn about their child’s interests.

With that in mind, our library teams have chosen their favourite children’s books and launched a new online resource for parents. Tailored to four specific age groups, we’ve outlined reading advice, tips and recommended book lists for young children.

Whether it’s Mem Fox, Davina Bell or Ezekiel Kwaymullina, we’ve selected age-appropriate stories that will help you introduce your child to unfamiliar and exciting settings.

Our aim is to Transform Boroondara and make sure that parents and children have access to the resources they need to develop early literacy skills, and kickstart a love of reading.

Visit Literacy and reading resources for families for more information and start reading today.

Two young children reading books.

New car park at Patterson Reserve

New car park at Patterson Reserve kreynold Thu 21 October 2021

A new public car park to be built by Victorian Government agency Homes Victoria at Patterson Reserve in Hawthorn replaces the existing car park that will be removed as part of Homes Victoria’s redevelopment of the Bills Street public housing site.

The Victorian Government released its redevelopment plans for the former Bills Street Public Housing Estate in July of this year, proposing 206 social and affordable apartments. The existing car park on Robinson Road falls within the area marked for redevelopment.

The new car park will see an increase in parking capacity from 39 parking bays to 48. Two DDA-compliant spaces are also included. All construction and delivery costs will be covered by Homes Victoria, with the project to be put to tender before Christmas and construction expected to begin in 2022.

The car park design includes new lighting, drainage, a new pram crossing, a raised-threshold pedestrian crossing on Robinson Road at the intersection with Reserve Road, a raised-threshold shared-path crossing within the car park for velodrome users, and the installation of a City of Boroondara-branded bike repair station.

Council has sought to minimise any impact on trees in Patterson Reserve through the design, and will ensure that protection measures are in place to protect existing trees throughout construction. The velodrome landform will also be maintained.

A cyclist on the velodrome.

Reshaping Boroondara's golf course

Reshaping Boroondara's golf course kreynold Thu 21 October 2021

Works officially began in early September to reconfigure our Freeway Golf Course, with the course now expected to be closed for up to 14 months.

A new 18-hole championship course is being built to complement the revised land layout due to the impact of the North East Link Project (NELP), and ensure our community retains access to a high-quality public golf course.

In November, NELP will acquire up to four hectares of land from the previous course layout to construct their new North East Link entry and exit ramps at Bulleen Road.

The new course design, developed by leading golf-course architects Pacific Coast Design, has been shaped to maximise the course distance despite the loss of land and maintain an enjoyable 18-hole experience. The design will deliver sufficient challenge and interest for players, while allowing us to also support one of Boroondara’s most spectacular biodiversity sites by planting extra trees and vegetation.

Arial view of the Freeway Golf Course.

‘Walk and talk’ golf course tour

Ever wondered what goes into building a golf course? Come along to our ‘walk and talk’ golf course tour, led by course architects
Pacific Coast Design.

COVID restrictions permitting, you’ll walk the course with the experts and see firsthand the process and methodologies that go into creating and re-shaping a course, with a particular focus on emerging trends and sustainable best practice. Each tour will take about an hour.

Date: Saturday 20 November

Time: 1pm

To register and find out more visit Freeway Golf Course reconfiguration.

Please note only limited registrations are available.

New public space in level-crossing designs

New public space in level-crossing designs kreynold Thu 21 October 2021

A new open space at Union Road, Surrey Hills, is a feature of the latest designs from the Victorian Government’s Level Crossing Removal Project (LXRP) for the Surrey Hills and Mont Albert level-crossing removals.

Following community feedback, the LXRP added a new station entrance on Montrose Street in Surrey Hills and a new pedestrian bridge and plaza at Hamilton Street, Mont Albert, featuring the heritage Mont Albert train station building.

The LXRP has indicated designs for the new open space at Union Road haven’t been finalised yet, so over the last few months Council has sought feedback to hear more about what our community wants to see created in this space to support our Surrey Hills shopping strip and local community.

Council will use this feedback in formulating a response to the LXRP on their design of this open space.

We’ve received valuable feedback about how you’d like to use this new open space, what key design features you’d like and what streetscape, amenity and connectivity improvements you’d like to see.

For more information and the latest updates, visit Surrey Hills level crossing removal.

Shops in Surrey Hills.

Interview with Boroondara's sculptor, Michael Meszaros

Interview with Boroondara's sculptor, Michael Meszaros kreynold Thu 21 October 2021

Local artists have continued to adapt throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Boroondara artist Michael Meszaros shares his story of resilience and an on-again off-again retrospective.

It is no secret our arts and culture scene has been hit hard by ongoing COVID-19 restrictions over the past 18 months. Boroondara’s arts and cultural venues have at times had to close their doors, with exhibitions, events and programs moving to an online format for the benefit of the local community and to ensure artists could continue to showcase and share their work.

One particular example of resilience through trying times is the story of Michael Meszaros, a local resident and artist whose career as a sculptor spans 50 years.

To mark this special milestone, Michael’s latest exhibition was formed, destined for Town Hall Gallery at the iconic Hawthorn Arts Centre.

50 years as a Sculptor celebrates Michael’s career as a full-time, self-supporting artist, showcasing a number of his well-known public works throughout Melbourne, Australia and internationally. Working primarily in bronze, fabricated copper and stainless steel, his work includes portraits, relief sculptures, exhibition sculptures and his particular specialty, medals.

“The exhibition reflects something of the range of work I have done using many styles, techniques and materials. I enjoy working in different ways and have never tried to consciously create a signature style,” Michael says.

Due to COVID-19, restrictions on movement often made it difficult for Michael to get supplies and meet presentation deadlines. Further, Michael’s exhibition was scheduled for display at Town Hall Gallery during 2020, however it had to be rescheduled to 2021 given the lockdown restrictions in place across Melbourne last year.

Installation shot of 50 years a Sculptor featuring metal sculptures.

“COVID-19 has been a challenge for many artists,” he says.

Melbourne’s most recent COVID-19 lockdown meant that 50 years as a Sculptor was only open to the public for a number of days before Town Hall Gallery and Hawthorn Arts Centre temporarily closed, based on the advice of the Victorian Chief Health Officer.

“The arts are an important part of people’s lives,” Michael reflects. “Not being able to go to exhibitions, performances, movies, concerts and festivals has impacted people’s lives.”

As a response, Boroondara Arts has proudly assisted in delivering an online version of Michael’s exhibition through video and photography.

“A large number of people have told me that they really wanted to see my show, so having it published online was a big help,” Michael says.

He hopes that as restrictions begin to ease, our local community will continue to get behind the arts and reconnect once more.

View the exhibition online at 50 Years as a Sculptor.

metal sculpture of a school of fish.

Michael Meszaros, 'Pursued', 2010, 32 x 37 x 39cm, bronze, image courtesy of the artist.

Boroondara Arts continue to deliver a curated collection of exhibitions, performances, workshops and screenings, like this month’s community exhibition Outback by Lyn Guy.

Visit Boroondara Arts to find out what’s on.

Quilted image of red boulders.

Lyn Guy, 'The Devil’s Marbles', 2017, silk dupon, procion dyes, monofil thread, rayon embroidery threads and backing fabrics, shapewell and pellum, mounted behind glass in natural ash wood frame, 62 x 74cm, image courtesy of the artist.

Swim safe this summer

Swim safe this summer kreynold Fri 22 October 2021

With thousands of swimming lessons missed during the pandemic, it’s more important than ever to ensure our children are safe around water this summer.

Swimming and water play are part of an Australian childhood, but we need to take care when young ones are close to water. According to the Royal Children’s Hospital, drowning is the third most common cause of death for Australian children aged one to 14. Children can drown silently in as little as 20 seconds.

Private swimming pools can be a danger, often due to non-compliant pool-safety barriers or a lack of supervision. Even fish ponds,
fountains, paddling pools and eskies can be a drowning hazard for small children.

Is your pool or spa safety barrier compliant? Here’s what you should check:

  • Gates must be self-closing and self-latching.
  • Barriers must be rigid and secure.
  • Climbable objects, like pot plants, garden furniture, toys and vegetation, must be moved 1.2 metres away from the barrier.

Under Victorian Government legislation, all pool and spa owners are required to register their pool or spa with their local council and have the pool safety barrier inspected and certified every four years by a registered building surveyor or inspector.

Father and child playing in the pool.

Certificate date extended

On 12 October the Building Regulations 2018 were amended giving owners of pools and spas a six-month extension to the due
date for the first certificates of pool and spa barrier compliance.

For more details and to register, visit How to register your pool or spa.

Four expert tips to stay safe around water

KidSafe Victoria says for maximum safety, these four steps should be used together:

Designate a supervisor

At a backyard pool, particularly during a get-together, don’t assume someone is watching the kids. Get adults to take turns to actively supervise. Toddlers should be within arm’s reach of an adult, older children should have an adult within the water area ready to enter if needed.

Restrict access

At home, spas and backyard pools must be protected by a safety barrier.

Learn to resuscitate

Learn CPR and keep your skills updated. Place resuscitation posters in pool and spa areas.

Keep them water wise

Water awareness and swimming classes can help make children familiar with water and become confident swimmers.

Help us prevent fires this summer

Help us prevent fires this summer kreynold Fri 22 October 2021

As we approach fire danger season in Victoria, even our local suburbs and neighbourhoods can be at risk of fire if properties aren’t maintained and kept free of fire hazards.

Owners of vacant land have a responsibility to maintain their properties and clear the land of any hazards that could cause fires, such as dry long grass, weeds, rubbish piles, branches, leaves and other flammable materials.

Our annual inspection of properties is currently underway, and we ask that vacant land is cleared of hazards by early November and maintained over the summer months.

Unmaintained residential properties can also be a danger. Are there neighbouring properties in your street that present a clear fire risk with long
grass, garden mulch, dead foliage, firewood and other materials? You can help us by reporting these risks.

We will investigate any reports of potential fire hazards and ask that any are removed before the summer months.

For more information and to report a potential fire hazard, visit Fire prevention or call (03) 9278 4444.

Council joins campaign against gender violence

Council joins campaign against gender violence kreynold Fri 22 October 2021

City of Boroondara is proud to be participating in the annual 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence campaign to create awareness, facilitate conversations, and challenge the issues of violence against women and gender inequality.

This campaign runs between 25 November (International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women) and 10 December (Human Rights Day).

Family violence rates have increased in Boroondara during the COVID-19 pandemic, and we are committed to working with Victoria Police and external agencies to prevent gender-based violence and stand together with the community on this important issue.

Across the 16 days, we will be hosting a range of free online community workshops, activities and information sessions to learn what gender-based violence means and how to support someone you may know experiencing violence.

Events include a library story time about modelling gender equity, and an author talk from Jess Hill, acclaimed journalist and presenter of See What You Made Me Do.

If you or someone you know is experiencing gender-based violence, we urge you to reach out for help. For a full list of support services available, visit Family violence.

A purple ribbon and a 'stop violence' sign.

Borrow from our libraries, no matter the restrictions

Borrow from our libraries, no matter the restrictions kreynold Fri 22 October 2021

Boroondara Library Service continues to deliver books and online resources for members, no matter the level of restrictions.

Our libraries continue to be an important resource for our community, especially during challenging times. We’ve put services in place to ensure our members always have access to our books, DVDs and online resources. In fact, more than 1.25 million items have been borrowed from Boroondara Library Service in the last 12 months.

No matter the level of restrictions, you can reserve items from any of our libraries online – even if they’re already on loan. Once you’ve received an email notification that your item is ready to collect, simply come to the library with your membership card and one of our friendly librarians will retrieve it for you.

As many books are in high demand, we’ve ensured that once you’ve finished reading, you can return your items to any of our library branches using the return chutes.

You can also explore our digital collections and services. Your library membership number and PIN give you access to resources including our collection of eBooks, audio books, eMagazines, movies, and storytelling for children.

To explore the options available and for more information, visit Library services available during restrictions.

Boroondara Library Service

Police to walk a friendly beat

Police to walk a friendly beat kreynold Fri 22 October 2021

Boroondara community members can expect to see more local police in our suburbs as part of friendly community engagement patrols in coming months.

Boroondara Local Area Commander Inspector Craig Pearson says the patrols are part of Boroondara’s Neighbourhood Policing Framework.
Under the framework each Boroondara Council ward has a dedicated police sergeant appointed to boost community engagement and help provide solutions for local issues.

Inspector Pearson says residents will see police out and about on foot patrols across our shopping strips, parks and gardens, and walking tracks.

“Please say hello to your local police officer, I am sure they would love to stop for a chat,” he says.

Local law update for building sites

Local law update for building sites kreynold Fri 22 October 2021

The Local Law for Protection of Council Assets and Control of Building Sites has been updated.

Adopted by Council on 23 August, the updated Local Law for Protection of Council Assets and Control of Building Sites came into effect on 1 September.

If you’re currently planning for building works, there are changes that may affect you, including changes to the way you need to conduct your works and increased penalties for breaches of the Local Law.

The purpose of the Local Law is to:

  • Protect Council assets from damage caused by any building works
  • Ensure building works are conducted safely and do not pose a risk to the community
  • Act as a deterrent to prevent activities that damage Council assets
  • Provide for the administration and enforcement of the Local Law to ensure assets are reinstated to Council standards.

For more information on the changes, visit Adoption of Protection of Council Assets and Control of Building Sites Local Law.

Neighbourhood Houses are here for you

Neighbourhood Houses are here for you kreynold Fri 22 October 2021

Our community centres and neighbourhood houses are here for you, no matter what level of restrictions are in place.

We are continually reassessing our programs and settings to respond to changing COVID-19 restrictions, so please visit our web page to keep up to date.
We are also looking to the future and planning new courses and events for 2022. In the meantime, we continue to offer:

  • Referrals to community and support services
    We can connect you with local services, including emergency relief.
  • Online classes
    You can keep active and engaged by taking one of many online classes, including health, wellness, arts and technology.
  • Digital literacy support
    We can help you get online, so you can attend online appointments, meetings or social catchups.
  • Phone calls for social connection
    Our friendly staff and volunteers can get in touch with you by phone to keep you connected and informed.

If you or someone you know would benefit from any of these services, please get in touch.

To find contact details for every neighbourhood house and community centre, visit Neighbourhood houses and community centres or call (03) 9278 4444.

Hands all brought together in a circle.

Glenferrie ward meeting

Glenferrie ward meeting kreynold Fri 22 October 2021

The full ward meeting for the Glenferrie Ward has been rescheduled to Thursday 25 November, from 5pm to 6:30pm, in the Zelman Room at the Hawthorn Arts Centre. All ward community members welcome. An update on significant current projects in the ward will be provided and questions welcomed. The meeting will be conducted in accordance with COVID-19 State Government directives in operation at this time. Check Glenferrie Ward meeting for any updates, and to check if you belong to Glenferrie Ward.