New Town Centre in Burdell, QLD, features giant transplanted fig tree in innovative Stratacell installation
In 2012, Stockland Development set about transforming a greenfield site in Main St, Burdell, QLD. An ambitious undertaking, project designs featured a new Town Square showcasing a concrete amphitheatre with a giant transplanted fig tree.
Barry Heffer, Regional NQ Manager at Naturform, said, “This construction was a greenfield site with nothing there originally. It was important to achieve shade and a sense of scale with an impressive large mature tree as the main backdrop to complement the new Town Centre. To bring this vision to life, we installed a 1.5 x 1.5 x 6m matrix of Stratacells under a large mound with terraced concrete seating and an impressive water terrace feature. Two 50 tonne cranes lifted a giant Ficus benjamina tree into place.”
Providing enough uncompacted soil and room to grow for the transplanted ficus was key to the success of the project. Whilst this was a somewhat unorthodox use of Citygreen’s Stratacell system, Barry felt reassured by previous experience with Citygreen products. “Citygreen have worked with Naturform on many projects in Townsville, northern Queenland. The Flinders Mall redevelopment was a major undertaking back in 2010. Citygreen always give great back up support and advice and go beyond my expectations as a supplier. As a construction company, Naturform need confidence that the products used are top quality and meet the expectation and integrity of the specification. Citygreen products do both.”
Tim Connor, Senior Landscape Architect at RPS, said, “The primary goal of the tree was to be a beacon from the adjacent shopping centre and out onto the vast open space to the north of the Town Square. Due to the nature of the amphitheatre seating, a structural base was required. Stratacell was used to create this structural base for the seating and maximise the allowable root vault for the tree. The use of Stratacell also negated the requirement for structural soil which was not easily sourced in northern Queensland.
Barry Heffer said, “Since planting, the tree has flourished growing to twice its size without causing any damage to the surrounding infrastructure. We’ve achieved a very large canopy shade tree in a prominent position whilst ensuring that the root system would not damage or interfere with the water feature or the extensive terraced seating. The Stratacell design met both criteria and has resulted in an outstanding result. The client, Stockland Development, are very happy with the outcome. Citygreen delivers an easy to install system and good quality products that instil confidence in the construction crew who are installing. They also provide good back up service and are always available to discuss options and contribute to solutions.”
Tim Connor agreed, saying, “With the help of Citygreen, we were able to convey through example projects to the client the positive benefits of the product. Ultimately, Stratacell allowed the procurement of a larger tree which was key to the success of this project.”
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