The Coal Loader Platform opened in March 2018 as public open space.
The last main stage of the redevelopment of the Coal Loader Centre for Sustainability, the Platform is one of Sydney’s largest publicly accessible green roof spaces. The concrete and sandstone platform structure is one hectare in size (seven Olympic-sized swimming pools would fit side by side along its length) and is designed to be a multi-purpose recreational space with spectacular views of the harbour.
Check out this visit by Costa Georgiadis from Gardening Australia (ABC):
ABC Gardening Australia program on the Coal Loader Platform
(broadcast ABC TV 8 June 2018)
The Coal Loader Platform has recently won the Parks and Leisure Australia’s NSW Park of the Year and NSW Community Facility of the Year 2018.
It is shortlisted for the 2018 Australian Urban Design Awards on 25 October in the 'built projects - local and neighbourhood scale' category.
It also won the 2018 Australian Institute of Landscape Architect’s NSW Cultural Heritage Award of Excellence.
Sustainability Features of the Platform
Urban Harvest Precinct
The Eastern edge of the Platform is comprised of over 40 urban harvest plots that are now home to the Coal Loader Platform Community Garden group and also leased allotments. The raised wicking bed plots are irrigated by recycled stormwater. In addition there are two aquaponics facilities, fruit trees and herb planters. Grape vines are planned along the colonnade to be based on heritage varieties originally imported by Alexander Berry (the original British settler of the area). These vines will provide summer shade, frame the view, and can be harvested for foodstuffs and wine.
Many features work together on the Platform to ensure all the water that falls onsite is stored and reused for irrigation.
Many of the old coal loading chutes that sit above Tunnel 3 were turned into raingardens that clean and filter sediment from rain and stormwater via specially selected reeds and rushes.
After being cleaned by these raingardens, the water is fed through the chutes into one of 50 rainwater tanks that line Tunnel 3. These tanks capture 275,000L of water that is then reused to irrigate the urban harvest plots, native garden demonstration area, western herb planters and lawn above.
A colonnade along the western edge provides shelter from sun and rain and supports special integrated solar panels that, together with sun-tracking panels at the south end of the platform, generate electricity to 100% offset site power requirements. Together, the total system size is 50kw.
Native Garden Demonstration Area
A demonstration area at the southern end of the platform provides guidance on the best local Australian plants for green-roof environments.
The platform provides opportunities for learning and social interaction in an "outdoor classroom" environment - in keeping with the "hands-on" ethos of the Centre for Sustainability.
A range of smart technologies and sensors monitor key environmental parameters and this information will be fed back to a website portal, allowing remote interaction, research and analysis by schools, universities and other interested groups.
Contact the staff at the Coal Loader on 9936 8100.