A new park slated for a housing development in Ballarat’s western growth area will likely have an Aboriginal name.
Karingga Park is planned for a new housing Alfredton Grove Estate located north the Ballarat-Carngham Road and to the east of Dyson Drive in Alfredton.
City of Ballarat officers stated in a report the word means ‘grow’ in Wathaurung language, reflecting the rapid growth in the city’s west.
The proposed park will include play spaces and activity areas, to cater for the incoming community. This includes a large open grassed area, a basketball half court and a fitness station with sit up boards and pull up bars. A large ‘urban forest’ in the park’s centre will include climbing logs and balancing beams.
Council officers said the landscaping will involve planting of a “variety of tree and plant species to provide an attractive community amenity” and benefit future residents.
Alfredton is leading the charge for Ballarat’s population boom. According to the Australia Bureau of Statistics, between 2016 and 2017, the suburb was the largest growth area with a population increase of 5.7 per cent.
Consultation on the name took place between July 16 and August 13 but no submissions were received.
The council has consulted with the Registered Aboriginal Party, as recommended by the Wathaurung Aboriginal Corporation when the city considers using an Aboriginal name.
According to the Office of the Surveyor General, the rapid expansion of regional residential developments provides opportunities for “contemporary and historic Aboriginal naming themes to be adopted”.
City of Ballarat councillors will consider the proposal at an ordinary council meeting on Wednesday night. If adopted, council will forward the proposal to the Office of Geographic Names for final approval.
The naming decision comes in light of City of Ballarat’s controversial decision in 2014 to drop the name ‘Mullawallah’ from contention as a name for a new suburb abutting Alfredton, following objections it was difficult to spell.
The area is now known as Winter Valley, but was proposed to be named after much-respected Aboriginal elder William Wilson, believed to have been the last member of the Ballaarat tribe.